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Russian Medvedev makes history, reaches No. 1 in ATP Rankings

IANS | February 28, 2022 05:35 PM

LONDON: Russia's Daniil Medvedev has displaced Serbian Novak Djokovic as the world's top-ranked tennis player in the latest ATP Rankings released on Monday.

The 26-year-old Medvedev thus becomes the 27th player to reach No. 1 in the ATP Rankings. Medvedev, who won the US Open last year defeating Djokovic, is now on 8, 615 points and passes the Serbian (8, 465 points), who has held the top spot in men's tennis for a record 361 total weeks.

"Of course I am happy to reach No. 1. It was my goal since I was young and especially my goal in the latest times, " Medvedev was quoted as saying by atptour.com.

"I got a lot of messages from many people and from other tennis players and I just want to thank everybody for the big support."

Medvedev is the first player outside the 'Big Four' -- Djokovic, Swiss master Roger Federer, Spanish stalwart Rafael Nadal and Great Britain's Andy Murray -- to hold the top spot in 18 years, three weeks and six days, since American Andy Roddick on February 1, 2004.

The last time there was a new world No. 1 was more than five years ago, when Murray made it there on November 7, 2016.

Medvedev is the third Russian to achieve the feat, joining Yevgeny Kafelnikov and Marat Safin. Kafelnikov spent six weeks atop the ATP Rankings and Safin was in the top spot for nine weeks, according to ATP.

Medvedev, who stands at 198cm, is the tallest player to earn the honour in the history of the ATP Rankings. The 26-year-old is also the sixth-oldest player to reach world No. 1 for the first time.

Guaranteed to claim the top spot when Djokovic lost on February 24 in the quarterfinals of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships against Jiri Vesely of the Czech Republic, Medvedev last week reached the semifinals of the Mexican Open in Acapulco.

Some of Medvedev's biggest results en route to world No. 1 include his first Grand Slam title at last year's US Open, an ATP Masters 1000 trophy last year in Toronto at the National Bank Open, a run to the final at last year's ATP Finals and a trip to his fourth major final at this year's Australian Open where he lost to Nadal.

Medvedev broke into the top 100 in the ATP Rankings in November 2016 when he was 20. The next year, he competed at the inaugural Next Gen ATP Finals in Milan and in July 2019, he broke into the top-10 for the first time.

He has won 13 tour-level titles, including four Masters 1000 crowns. Medvedev also claimed the season-ending ATP Finals trophy in 2020.

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