Mover of the Week
This week Australia’s Ashleigh Barty broke into the top 25 for the first time despite losing the Wuhan final 7-6 6-7 2-6 to Caroline Garcia. Her efforts in Wuhan saw her move from #37 to #23, now only one place behind her countrywoman Daria Gavrilova. The 21-year-old Barty played superbly all week, battling past several top players. These included Johanna Konta, Agnieszka Radwanska, Karolina Pliskova and Jelena Ostapenko. Barty has a wide variety of shots in her arsenal, which is one reason she is often compared to Grand Slam winner Martina Hingis. Barty has also become well known for taking a “break” from tennis to play professional cricket. After notable success in the 2015-2016 cricket season Barty returned to tennis in 2016. So far in 2017 Barty has risen from #92 to now, #23. And that is why Ashleigh Barty is our Mover of the Week.
Loser of the Week
The ‘other Pliskova’ as Kristyna Pliskova is sometimes referred to as, has dropped out of the top 50. In fact she has fallen down 17 spots to #58. Like her twin sister Karolina, Kristyna is record setting in the ace department but where Karolina has made a shift in her game, Kristyna has not. Karolina, at #4 in the world, reportedly altered her mindset, among other improvements, when she broke through in 2014. However Kristyna does not walk around the court with the same confidence as her twin sister. Whilst twins don’t have to be the same in everything, but this is one area where one would assume Kristyna should be aiming to emulate her sister. If she doesn’t, a further slide down the rankings can’t be ruled out.
France’s Caroline Garcia battled with Ashleigh Barty for almost three hours to win her first career Premier 5 title at the Wuhan Open in China. Both players were unseeded but it was Garcia who was victorious. Garcia served eight aces in the match and hit a total of 32 winners, breaking serve eight times from 16 opportunities. The 23-year-old Garcia has been recovering from a back injury but her increased fitness after her rehabilitation is helping her game. As a result Garcia rose from #20 to #15 in the world.
Another player who had a fine week in Wuhan was Greece’s Maria Sakkari. Sakkari took out the world #6 out Caroline Wozniacki in the second round of the Wuhan Open, making it all the way to the semifinals. It was all the more impressive considering Sakkari entered the tournament as a qualifier. Her triumph over Wozniacki was also her first ever top ten win. As a result of her Wuhan exploits Sakkari climbed from #80 to #50, quite a leap.
Kateryna Bondarenko won her first WTA tour title in nine years against Timea Babos, 6-4 6-4. A surprise result considering Babos was the number two seed and most people’s favourite for the win. But Bondarenko drew first blood and won the opening set. Then she broke Babos three times in a row in the second set and though Babos broke back twice, ultimately Bondarenko held firm. Still, the 24-year-old Babos rises up the rankings nine places into the top 50 at #43. Bondarenko’s achievement goes beyond the title victory. In 2012 she retired from tennis due to a pregnancy. But she returned in 2014 and continued to compete. Her highest ranking was at #29 back in October of 2009 and now the 31-year-old Bondarenko is headed back in that direction at #87, up 46 spots.
- Garbine Muguruza, 6245 points, no change
- Simona Halep, 5645 points, no change
- Elina Svitolina, 5640 points, no change
- Karolina Pliskova, 5605 points, no change
- Venus Williams, 4652 points, no change
- Caroline Wozniacki, 4640 points, no change
- Johanna Konta, 4435 points, no change
- Jelena Ostapenko, 4130 points, moves up two places
- Svetlana Kuznetsova, 4115 points, moves down one place
- Dominika Cibulkova, 3330 points, moves down one place
- Agnieszka Radwanska, 3250 points, moves up two places
- Angelique Kerber, 3236 points, no change
- Madison Keys, 3213 points, moves down two places
- Kristina Mladenovic, 3090 points, moves up one place
- Caroline Garcia, 2980 points, moves up 5 places
- Coco Vandeweghe, 2764 points, no change
- Sloane Stephens, 2712 points, no change
- Petra Kvitova, 2357 points, moves down four places
- Anastasija Sevastova, 2295 points, moves down one place
- Elena Vesnina, 2190 points, moves up one place
- Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova, 2190 points, moves down two places
- Daria Gavrilova, 2135 points, no change
- Ashleigh Barty, 2035 points, moves up fourteen places
- Serena Williams, 2030 points, moves down one place
- Shuai Peng, 1860 points, moves down one place
Who was your Mover of the Week? Let us know in the comments below!
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