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21 May, 2022 11:20

Wimbledon ban could boost Russian star in world rankings

Daniil Medvedev's Wimbledon ban could ironically move him to the top spot in the world rankings
Wimbledon ban could boost Russian star in world rankings

Daniil Medvedev could potentially overtake Novak Djokovic at the summit of the tennis world rankings, even if the Serbian ace wins both the French Open and Wimbledon this summer, and despite Medvedev being banned from competing at this summer's grass court showpiece in London. 

On Friday, the ATP and WTA revealed that they would strip Wimbledon of its rankings points as punishment for banning players from both Russia and Belarus from competing at this summer's Grand Slam, which begins in late June. 

This decision was made by the Wimbledon chiefs last month to bar players from the two nations as a measure of defiance against the launch of the military operation by Russia against Ukraine, which has also been supported by Belarus. 

Sportspeople from both countries have been penalized by several different sporting federations, perhaps most notably in the football world where Russia were stripped of hosting rights to this season's Champions League final as well as having their national team effectively banned from the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. 

Several players have expressed their opposition to the third Grand Slam event of the year essentially turning into an exhibition tournament after being stripped of rankings points - but one player who looks like he might be the most affected is Djokovic, who now won't have a chance to defend the 2,000 rankings points he won by winning Wimbledon last year.

Tennis rankings are calculated by combining current scores against historical achievements - with those who scored highly at last year's event now likely to lose out when the new rankings are issued on the day after the Wimbledon finals. 

This means that Djokovic is almost certain to drop out of the top spot in the rankings, where he could likely be overtaken by Medvedev - who would do so without even hitting a ball in London.

Matteo Berrettini of Italy also looks set to drop out of the top ten as he will lose out on 1,200 points after his impressive run to last year's final. 

British star Emma Raducanu is another who will likely lose out, as she will almost certainly also be deprived of the points she accrued in her run to the last-16 in 2021. 

Meanwhile, it was also confirmed that rankings points will also not be awarded in the junior and wheelchair events at Wimbledon this year.

The impact on the rankings is sure to be an unwelcome development within the ATP and WTA, particularly now that some of the sport's top stars are set to see their rankings drop even after a successful run at the All-England Club.