ATP World Tour, WTA tour: Grand Slam
Defending champions: Rafael Nadal, Francesca Schiavone
Everyone wants to know what might happen during the French Open in the men's rankings. I've pored over the numbers so let me get this out of the way: If the “on fire” (can we even call it that anymore?) Novak Djokovic makes the final against anyone, including Rafael Nadal, he will secure the No. 1 ranking, whether he wins the title or not. This calculation diminishes their potential match-up a little bit, but the numbers don't lie. So why is it possible? Well, Nadal has 2,000 points to defend compared to 360 for Djokovic. Simple as that.
For the women, there is a slight chance they could see a new World No. 1 in Paris. Caroline Wozniacki can hold the spot if: 1) she wins Brussels and reaches the RG quarterfinals 2) loses Brussels but reaches the semifinals in Paris. In any case, Kim Clijsters would need to win the title to have any shot of overtaking her. Vera Zvonereva will at least hold her No. 3 ranking; but, with a little luck, she could take back the No. 2 spot from Clijsters if the Belgian is out before the quarterfinals and Zvonareva reaches the final four.
win in Rome, Sharapova brought herself into the No. 7 position and could strike as high as No. 4 if she were to win the title.
Needless to say, there are a lot of possibilities so enjoy the ride. If Paris has taught us anything, it’s to expect the unexpected.
About Richard: A life-long tennis fan, Richard offers thoughts on rankings for both the ATP and WTA. He runs a tennis blog, The Let Tennis, and is the author of two books, including his latest, Anything is Possible. You can visit his website at http://richarddedor.com.
(CORRECTION: A correction was made to the chances of Caroline Wozniacki holding her No. 1 ranking. Initially, we stated there was no chance of her losing the top spot. But after recalculating the points totals there is a small window for Kim Clijsters to take it.)
[Photo(s): Getty Images]