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Top 10 [Tennis] Rankings Corrections and how the 2024 Wimbledon Championships tightened the Top 5 Players on both the WTA and ATP tours

Over the past near 21 days the unfolding of the 2024 Wimbledon Championships has taken place from the lead up to the aftermath and with equally polarising results and yet still those players that are compounded by the data and how the past season has continued to unfold has been cause for a much needed realignment. A cautionary tale here is in respect to being mindful of the past season — 12 months until now, as if we only consider the current season and how the results have unfolded, then there’s a significant gap between the anticipated and what has more recently unfolded.

The beginning of the Championships noted the respective seedings take place on the Women’s and Men’s sides of the draw, as is typical, but what’s interesting here is in fact how the pending reshuffle of the rankings on both the WTA and ATP tours has been widely discussed on Beyond Top 10 Tennis this season with 50% of current Top 10 players not correlating with their ranking. In other words, their results do not align with those of a player ranked inside the Top 10. Most importantly, this is across both the WTA and ATP tours. What’s even more interesting, is that the ATP tour rankings started to correct themselves roughly 2-3 months ago as the clay-court season really triggered some key players to amp up their game and get back in action. The same can’t be said for the WTA tour which has now only corrected itself but there is still a margin of error for those who remain not in alignment with a Top 10 ranking.

To better clarify these rankings, it’s important to showcase how the 2024 Wimbledon Championships unveiled and impacted those inside the Top 10. On the WTA tour, there were only 9 active seeds due to Sabalenka withdrawing after the draw had been announced. Of these 9 seeds, only 3 made the Round of 16 or further — Gauff, Rybakina and Paolini. Importantly, these 3 players have remained inside the 8% across the past 2-3 seasons. Despite. Swiatek falling in the 3rd Round, as the reigning French Open Champion, Swiatek’s results this season have equally been in this category and Sabalenka closely follows, however, not too close. The updated WTA rankings post Wimbledon does in fact afford a better depiction of the Top 5 and resonated with the data. Noteworthy, players ranked inside the Top 10 but outside the Top 5 do not all align with these metrics. Whilst Krejcikova is the newly crowned Wimbledon Champion, she is deserving of her place inside the Top 10. However, if her results do not follow across the hard-court season she is more suceptible to regress. Either way, Krejcikova is a part of the 2% vulnerable to regressing outside the Top 10.

The other player inside the Top 10 and suceptible of regressing would be Sakkari given her results this season do in fact align with a Top 10 ranking — albeit not at the Grand Slam level, but she has a level of consistency ahead of other players inside this range. Collins is now more firmly inside the Top 10 and she was prior to Roland Garros before slightly being pushed out, but Collins’ performance does in fact correlate with a Top 10 ranking this season. Not quite Top 5, but Top 10 does resonate with her level of play. That leaves Pegula and Zheng.

Unfortunately, whilst Pegula has had some time off this season, her results simply do not correlate with a Top 10 ranking and haven’t all season with the exception to her maiden grass-court title prior to Wimbledon. Sure, Zheng was a Finalist at the 2024 Australian Open but her results have continued to underperform since this peak performance. Two players who have in fact been tracking this season are Ostapenko and Kasatkina. Both of these players have been performing better than those who are not correlating with their current ranking. That said, Ostapenko has been inside the Top 10 this season and does deserve to become a barrier breaker again. That leaves 1 place up for grabs for players who do in fact correlate with that Top 10 ranking and can be placed inside the 8% in contrast to the aforementioned 2%. And who would that be? That’s the elusive question to unfold for the rest of the season, but there are two primary players who are tracking with similar if not greater consistency than Kasatkina — Keys, a former barrier breaker for a number of seasons, and Navarro, a standout player so far this season along with a handful of players who continue to find that new baseline. Not quite as consistent as Paolini, but has surpassed the likes of Kostyuk and Kalinskaya. Whilst Samsonova is closing in on the Top 10, both Keys and Navarro have the greater potential and as far as the data is concerned and clear indicators of a player’s capacity to correlate with a Top 10 ranking — these are clear signs.

As such, the WTA tour still has a slight correction to unfold and the current Top 10 rankings post Wimbledon, whilst improved, does not fully align with current player performances, baselines and/or key metrics.

When it comes to the ATP tour the correction started to take place at the beginning of the 2024 season when the likes of Tsitsipas, Fritz and Rune were pushed out of the Top 10 and De Minaur, Dimitrov and Ruud became barrier breakers. Whilst Dimitrov and Ruud have both been inside this key ranking range previously, it was De Minaur who remains the sole newcomer this season. Interestingly, both Tsitsipas and Fritz have briefly progressed back inside the Top 10 this season but neither have been able to maintain their place and as such were clearly denoted inside the 2%. Those inside this key marker now are Dimitrov and Ruud despite their more successful clay-court season and Dimitrov continuing to maintain his peak baseline. The only player at this stage inside the Top 10 who does not correlate with this key range is Rublev and due to his on-court behaviour of late, he undoubtedly deserves a suspension in some way, shape or form to ensure physical self-harm is not accepted nor tolerated.

Noteworthy, when considering recent player performances it is in fact Fritz who has been finding his feet once again. It is equally important to note that Fritz has a peak baseline that fluctuates and is cyclical whereby he peaks and then there’s a drop off in his level of play before he peaks again. Fortunately for Fritz, this new cycle started just prior to Wimbledon before falling short to Musetti. Either way, the results speak for themselves and a true ranking correction on the ATP tour will include Fritz with Paul the second ‘new’ barrier breaker potentially this season. As far as the Top 5 are concerned, alike the WTA tour these are true depictions of current levels of play. The same can be said for the 8% if Fritz replaced Rublev. Interestingly, if Fritz is factored into the equation and due to his cyclical baseline, he would then be placed inside the 2% and Ruud would be pushed then into the 8%.

What’s even more interesting and why the correction of the ATP rankings remains true — prior to Wimbledon, in contrast to the WTA rankings, is that where the WTA had 3 of their Top 9 inside the Round of 16 — make that 4 if factoring the Top 10 seeds (i.e. Collins seeded 11 with Sabalenka’s 3rd Seed void), 7 players progressed to the Round of 16 and of those 7 players, they all lost to a Top 10 player if Fritz is granted that Top 10 ranking. Of these players, 5 progressed to the  in contrast to the WTA tour and only 2 of these players Rybakina and Paolini, progressed beyond the Round of 16 to the semi-finals and finals respectively.

What’s perhaps even more interesting is that Sinner continues his No.1 reign despite succumbing in the quarterfinals. Alcaraz secured back-to-back Grand Slams and still remains as No. 3. What’s even more wild is that Djokovic who is yet to win a title all season, continues his hold on the No. 2 ranking, however, both Alcaraz and Djokovic defended thier points from the 2023 Championships. Rublev, Hurkacz and Ruud did not pass the 2nd Round at best and still they remain inside the Top 10. That’s even more questionable. Pegula and Zheng were the only players on the WTA tour to fall in these earlier rounds and why they’ve also been flagged as not correlating with a Top 10 ranking. And whilst Rublev has equally been noted as not correlating with a Top 10 ranking, both Hurkacz and Ruud have had reasonable form this season but that 2% on the ATP tour is in fact ‘wider’ than on the WTA tour. In other words, more players on the ATP tour are more suceptible to being displaced in contrast to the WTA tour. The irony here is that is was the opposite merely a few weeks ago before the correction stared to take place, and now there are more vulnerable players on the ATP tour as the WTA tour is now tightening its ranks.

But to be clear, this is only applicable if the aforementioned Top 10 comes to fruition to align with a players current level of play which also accounts for a handful of players on both the WTA and ATP tours being displaced — regressing outside the Top 10 and to be replaced by one or more of those that have been named.

For a greater breakdown of player results across the 2024 Wimbledon Championships you’ll need to hold off until next week. Whilst I was hoping to ‘cram’ that all into one post, it turns out there were a lot more intricate details to divulge and discuss around Top 10 rankings, how these rankings have interchanges so far this season and the role of corrections pre-French Open and post-Wimbledon have started to shed new light on those players who truly have been holding onto that 8% as well as those who reside inside the 2% and remain susceptible to levelling out. Of course, the 8% is directly correlated with the 8 Keys and the prerequisite to a Top 10 ranking remains in the 7 Keys. The same can be said for those who have their eyes on becoming a barrier breaker — for the first time or to cross the threshold once again.

To learn more about our data, predictive analytics and how to optimise your own performance, head on over to AM8 International. To learn more about AM8 International check out our selection of Books and/or options to join Dr B’s Pack to gain exclusive access to the best in the world. Not quite ready? Head on over to Beyond Top 10 Tennis for free access to 80+ episodes directly from Dr Berge of what it really takes to win multiple Grand Slams to securing that Top 10 tennis ranking with new episodes each week. More? Catch up on our Tips over on TikTokTwitterThreads or Instagram for quick snippets to apply in your game, today. 

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How the 2024 French Open separated Top 10 Tennis Players and closed the Gap between Others plus lessons for the 2024 Olympics

As the red clay settles and the noise becomes that little bit quieter, the grass beckons for those who have had time for their losses to settle and tackle a new surface with renewed hope of a better performance. Yet the tide is still high for the Champions of the 2024 French Open as their new silverware finds a new place to call home. For whilst there are only two who left triumphant with these titles, there are many more who should indeed be proud of their accomplishments to performances that really should signal a highlight of their 2024 season.

The Champions are known and yet there were some surprises. Recall that anomalies do exist and this Roland Garros was no exception. Sure, there have been much greater anomalies but the ones this French Open were not as shocking as perhaps some may have had you believe. Andreeva had been progressing and if Grand Slam statistics were to be gauged, this was almost expected – a Round of 16 in contrast to a semi-final but then again, the nerves to the health of her opponents simply can’t be collated and they’re akin to environmental factors that happen to the best.

Of course, Sabalenka was favoured to progress to the Finals to have a third straight showdown against Swiatek and to really battle it out for their next respective Grand Slam title. But again, the data favoured Swiatek almost all season as Sabalenka’s performance only started to ‘track’ come Madrid and Rome. Swiatek on the other hand had started to track essentially after her earlier exit at the Australian Open. Sabalenka did progress further at the French in contrast to Swiatek at the Australian Open but what happened between is where it gets quite juicy.

Zheng was a first time Finalist at the start of the season and was somewhat of a surprise. Then again, she was coming off a maiden Quarter-Final at the US Open. Still, this was a rapid-fire climb and as anticipated by the data, Zheng’s performance has been lacklustre since this performance peak due to the data capturing key setbacks and essentially the downside of these rapid-fire results. In contrast, Paolini reached the Round of 16 of the Australian Open and continued to progress throughout the season – that is, until the French Open. With a ranking that continued to progress to a high of 13 and now a barrier breaker after her Finalist result, a Quarter-Final would have been anticipated by Paolini if her season had not been spurred with such impressive results. Nonetheless, this still remains an anomaly but not as much as Andreeva’s peak performance

And then there was Gauff who went under the radar all season long given that Swiatek to Collins were capturing the limelight. But what many forgot to note is that Gauff in fact consistently was showing up late in these events and at the Semi-Final stage quite frequently. It would not have been surprising if Gauff did in fact take out Swiatek but then again, Swiatek at Roland Garros has steadily become a formidable force.

Whilst there is so much more to discuss and dissect, these four players on the WTA tour represent key expectations per the data – the anticipated calibre of play of a Top 10 player at 50%, 25% the anomaly in Andreeva, and 25% the player who simply had been playing akin to the Top 10 throughout the season. 

Which brings us to a key point raised in the Top 10 on both the WTA and ATP tours – only 50% of players inside the Top 10 had been living up to their ranking expectation all season. Yes, it has been said time and time again that 50% of the current Top 10 were not performing at the level of a Top 10 player. As such, players ranked outside the Top 10 but inside the Top 20 had greater scope to become a barrier breaker this season. Zheng after her Finalist result — but her performance has not been aligned with a Top 10 baseline; Collins becoming a barrier breaker shortly before the French started with a Top 10 baseline and Ostapenko earlier this season became a barrier breaker after having a super start to the season before reaching a performance plateau and now is hovering outside the Top 10. Paolini then by all accounts was anticipated to become a barrier breaker this season, but perhaps not as soon as now. Either way, her performance and results this reason are better than 50% of the Top 10 prior to the French Open.

And that’s an important point to note – these insights are prior to the French Open and the new rankings released this week.

When it comes to the men there aren’t as many anomalies to note and/or discuss but rather the level of consistency of some of these Top 10 players that simply has fluctuated between the Australian Open to the commencement of the French Open that weakened the respective data to what was potentially to come. The Top 3 players – Djokovic, Sinner and Alcaraz all had question marks around their overall performance. Djokovic was without a title – the longest he’s been in quite some time at this stage of the season. Alcaraz had an ailment he was resting in the lead up and Sinner also had an ailment but wasn’t away for as much time. Out of these 3 players, Sinner was the player with the best results to date this season. And that’s the catch – this season, not last or the one before that. Sinner was favoured to claim his second Grand Slam and second this season if he was able to maintain his level of play. But then again, Alcaraz had been idling at his side and simply was able to capitalise with more rest under his belt.

Djokovic is in fact the anomaly this Grand Slam due to his withdrawal but also that he was able to reach the Quarter-Finals and back up some lengthy match wins with another. Some may say Zverev was the anomaly but I’ll disagree. Zverev has consistently been inside the Top 5 when Federer, Nadal and Djokovic were at their respective peaks and/or still Top 10 players respectively. Zverev was ahead of Tsitsipas and slightly behind Thiem. Then Tsitsipas peaked and Zverev fell behind, same with Medvedev then Rublev came along. But Zverev was always there. Sure, Hurkacz and Dimitrov have since come to the party, but Zverev has been showing up. Medvedev was anticipated to go further, but then again, De Minaur was projected to reach the Quarter-Final stage and only one could walk away with the win. Similar to Medvedev, Zverev just shows up and keeps his level of play in tact. Unfortunately, Alcaraz came along and crashed that limelight and then Sinner, too, with these two newcomers now leading the charge – 1 and 2 respectively post Roland Garros. But Zverev is still holding strong and arguably it really came down to the mentally stronger opponent and the player with that added bit of flair in their game which really handed Alcaraz his third Grand Slam – a huge accomplishment.

No, this wasn’t necessarily anticipated due to Alcaraz’s current season. But going off Grand Slam metrics over the past 24-36 months, this was by all accounts expected. The truth is in the data.

In respect to the ATP tour rankings, the Top 10 has strengthened and yet also, all players inside the Quarter-Finals were Top 10 players if assuming De Minaur was Top 10 (already this season, however was seeded 11 during the Open). This was not the same for the WTA tour with 3 external Top 10 players – Paolini, perhaps similar to De Minaur, but then also Gracheva and Andreeva. Indeed, the WTA had more earlier upsets than the ATP with the likes of Collins and Keys running on highs and falling early. On the men’s it was Rubelv – seeded 6, who fell earlier than anticipate whilst seeds 6, 7, 9 and 10 – Sakkari, Zheng, Ostapenko and Kasatkina fell prior to or at the third round stage like Rublev.

There’s a lot to dissect at the Grand Slam level but also results that were anticipated to those that weren’t and the anomalies and how they factor into the performance spectrum. A lot of this can be reviewed on Beyond Top 10 Tennis and Episodes 88 to 96 that were Special Editions exclusively for the 2024 French Open. 

But this isn’t the end of the clay season as Paris 2024 is just around the corner. It’s an incredible mix for the players – some with a second chance for redemption, others to add that Gold to their illustrious career, and others to cement their place in the history books at an early age. Whilst it’s too soon to share insights on who’s favoured to conquer and who’s not in the running to what the data really says, I’m going to keep quiet until after Wimbledon to better gauge how much time a player may have to prepare to how they’re tracking over this 6 to 8 week period to more finely tune the collective analysis and better explain why ‘this’ player is set, or why ‘another’ player is not primed for a podium finish. But then again, crazy things often happen at the Olympics and rarely do Top 10 players secure Gold, Silver and Bronze. And there’s an irony in that, too. One thing is for sure, and that is the Olympics favour the anomaly as the pressure really takes a hold of the favoured and often it becomes all too much whilst the underdog quietly makes their way through to land on the podium. But if you’ve also been following Beyond Top 10 Tennis and read my latest release “How to Develop a Top 10 Tennis Ranking” then you also know the key behind Olympic success and how the 2024 Wimbledon Champions are more likely to not be the defending Champions this season.

To learn more about our data, predictive analytics and how to optimise your own performance, head on over to AM8 International. To learn more about AM8 International check out our selection of Books and/or options to join Dr B’s Pack to gain exclusive access to the best in the world. Not quite ready? Head on over to Beyond Top 10 Tennis for free access to 80+ episodes directly from Dr Berge of what it really takes to win multiple Grand Slams to securing that Top 10 tennis ranking with new episodes each week. More? Catch up on our Tips over on TikTokTwitterThreads or Instagram for quick snippets to apply in your game, today.