ATP Weekly Update week 11: Juan Martin del Potro makes a statement with breakthrough win

ATP Weekly Update week 11: Juan Martin del Potro makes a statement with breakthrough win

The first Masters 1000 event of the season came to a dramatic end last week with a remarkable result and potentially the match of the season deciding the title.

pete-borkowski
Pete Borkowski

Here is your VAVEL USA ATP Weekly Update. Every Monday, we will be posting results and analysis from the previous week’s singles action on the ATP World Tour, along with a preview to the upcoming week. Keep coming back to VAVEL USA every Monday for your ATP Weekly Update.

The first Masters 1000 event of the 2018 season has set an extremely high bar for the other eight events on the schedule, even perhaps the majors. There was drama, there were upsets, there were epics, everything you could want in a tennis tournament. And in the end, it was an overdue champion outduelling a legend in a match for the ages to decide the crown.

Here is your ATP Weekly Update for week 11 of the 2018 season.

Last Week’s Results

Indian Wells

Despite being a major champion, Juan Martin del Potro had never won a Masters 1000 title coming into this week. That all changed when the Tower of Tandil battled past Roger Federer in an epic final to win the BNP Paribas Open crown, saving three championship points to do it. Check out the full final recap here. Federer had managed to pull an epic comeback in the semifinals against Borna Coric but fell just short of doing it again as del Potro came up clutch in the third set of their final. 

Roger Federer (left) congratulates Juan Martin del Potro (right) after their epic Indian Wells final on Sunday. Photo: Harry How/Getty Images
Roger Federer (left) congratulates Juan Martin del Potro (right) after their epic Indian Wells final on Sunday. Photo: Harry How/Getty Images

The tournament was full of surprises, with only three of the top eight seeds reaching the quarterfinals. The biggest surprise was Borna Coric, who upset three seeded opponents, most notably world number nine Kevin Anderson in the quarterfinals, on his way to the first Masters 1000 semifinal of his career, where he came agonizingly close to upsetting Federer. 2017 NextGen Finals champion Hyeon Chung also made a breakthrough by reaching his first Masters 1000 quarterfinal, also losing to Federer.

The tournament served as a major bounce-back for 2016 runner-up Milos Raonic, seeded 32nd at this year’s event, who won consecutive matches for the first time since August 2017 and reached his first semifinal since May 2017. He lost in the last four to del Potro After most of the major upsets occurred in week one, the biggest surprise came when 31st seed Philipp Kohlschreiber knocked off Australian Open runner-up and second seed Marin Cilic in straight sets in the third round.

Rankings Update

Mover of the Week: Milos Raonic

Milos Raonic turned his ranking around with a semifinal run in Indian Wells last week. He beat Sam Querrey in an epic quarterfinal to put himself back in the top 30, seen here celebrating the win. Photo: Harry How/Getty Images
Milos Raonic turned his ranking around with a semifinal run in Indian Wells last week. He beat Sam Querrey in an epic quarterfinal to put himself back in the top 30, seen here celebrating the win. Photo: Harry How/Getty Images

The former world number three’s run to the semifinals stopped a steady slide down the rankings, as he jumped 13 spots back up into the top 30. Because of injuries, Raonic, who had been a top-ten mainstay for the better part of the last few years, was even at risk of losing the top ranking within his own country but has put some space between himself and Denis Shapovalov and is now moving back towards the top 20.

The other semifinalist, Borna Coric, also climbed 13 spots to match his career-high of 33rd in the world. By winning the title, Juan Martin del Potro climbed two spots up to number six, his highest ranking since February 2014. By failing to defend his semifinal points from 2017, Jack Sock fell out of the top ten down to number 11. Lucas Pouille was the beneficiary. Despite losing his opening match, the Frenchman climbed up to a new career-high ranking of number 10, his first time cracking the top 10 on the men’s tour.

Borna Coric made a huge ranking jump following his surprising run to the Indian Wells semifinals. That included this upset win over Kevin Anderson in the quarterfinals. Photo: Harry How/Getty Images
Borna Coric made a huge ranking jump following his surprising run to the Indian Wells semifinals. That included this upset win over Kevin Anderson in the quarterfinals. Photo: Harry How/Getty Images

Other players who reached career-highs after Indian Wells include Diego Schwartzman (16), Adrian Mannarino (22), Hyeon Chung (23) and Filip Krajinovic (27).

Race to London

Position Name Points Change
1 Roger Federer 3100 -
2 Juan Martin del Potro 1760 +4
3 Marin Cilic 1380 -1
4 Hyeon Chung 1100 -1
5 Kevin Anderson  890 +4
6 Roberto Bautista Agut 805 +1
Diego Schwartzman 780 -3
8 Kyle Edmund 775 -3
Grigor Dimitrov 760 -1
10 Dominic Thiem 745 +2

After winning the title in Indian Wells, Juan Martin del Potro climbs up four spots to number two in the race. Kevin Anderson also moved into safer waters. His quarterfinal showing helped him jump four spots up to number five. Diego Schwartzman and Kyle Edmund each dropped three spots but stayed inside the qualifying zone at seventh and eighth respectively. Grigor Dimitrov was not so lucky, falling one spot to just outside the top eight.

The Indian Wells semi-finalists both had huge jumps. Coric climbed 73 spots in the race up to number 16 while Raonic rose an astounding 289 spots, although he is still fairly far back at number 26.  

This Week’s Action

Similar to two weeks ago, there will be half of an event being played this week with no titles on the line as the second half of the Sunshine Double will start on Wednesday.

Miami

There will be little rest for the stars as the tour shifts from the west coast of the United States to the east coast for the second Masters 1000 event of the season, the Miami Open. A similar field to the one we saw in Indian Wells will descend on Crandon Park, led by defending champion Roger Federer. Seven of the top ten will be in action, with 24 of the top 30 looking to take advantage of a fairly open field.

Roger Federer claimed the title last year in Miami and will look to bounce back after a tough loss in Indian Wells over the next two weeks. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images
Roger Federer claimed the title last year in Miami and will look to bounce back after a tough loss in Indian Wells over the next two weeks. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images

Federer, a three-time Miami champion, is one of two former champions in the draw. The other is the six-time champion, Novak Djokovic. The Serbian, who will be seeded ninth, is looking to break a tie with Andre Agassi for the most men’s singles titles in Miami.

There are several big names missing the tournament. Notable absences include 2017 runner-up Rafael Nadal, world number six Dominic Thiem, top-ten debutant Lucas Pouille, three-time major champion Stan Wawrinka, two-time Masters 1000 winner Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, and two-time Miami champion Andy Murray.

Check back next Monday for a wrap up of week 12 and a look ahead to week 13 on the ATP World Tour. Come to www.vavel.com/en-us/tennis-usa/ every Monday or follow us on twitter @VAVELUSATennis for your #ATPWeeklyUpdate

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