July 24, 2005 is the date in tennis history. That’s the last time a Big 4 player was not ranked in the Top 2. The next day, Rafael Nadal passed Lleyton Hewitt after winning Stuttgart, and that began a ranking run which could end on Monday, March 8.
Daniil Medvedev will break that stranglehold by reaching the Rotterdam final this upcoming week. Andy Murray on August 17, 2009 was the last player to hit No. 2 for a first time.
The Russian who just fell in the Australian Open finals, is the top seed at the event after the withdrawal of Rafael Nadal. He has won 20 of his last 21 matches and reached the finals at the his last events (including the ATP Cup).
The field is still deep with Stefanos Tsitsipas, Alexander Zverev, Andrey Rublev, 2015 champion Stan Wawrinka and 2020 finalist Felix Auger-Aliassime.
Medvedev’s path takes him through No. 27 Dusan Lajovic, No. 26 Borna Coric and then possibly Auger-Aliassime in the quarters and Zverev in the semifinals.
Auger-Aliassime opens against Kei Nishikori while in the bottom half Wawrinka collides with Karen Khachanov.
ATP TOP 3 (as of March 1, 2021)
1 Novak Djokovic 12,030
2 Rafael Nadal 9,850
3 Daniil Medvedev 9,735
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