German tennis star Alexander Zverev has called out the ATP’s ranking system, questioning how he can make a grand slam final and still sit below Roger Federer in seventh.
Federer returned to play last week after more than 12 months on the sideline, but he’s still ranked world No. 6 because the ranking system was frozen when COVID-19 shut down the tour.
Rankings are now determined by a players’ best results over the previous two years instead of the old system which was a 52-week rolling window.
Zverev has been consistently performing well since the tour resumed last year, making the final at the US Open and Paris Masters 1000.
The 23-year-old has won ATP 250 events in Germany and was knocked out of the Australian Open in the quarterfinals last month by eventual champion Novak Djokovic.
“The ranking doesn’t really matter to me and with the system we have now, I should be top four, top five in the world in the normal system, but the system we have now is a bit absurd,” Zverev said.
“I am the biggest Roger Federer fan but he has not played for a year and he is higher ranked than me. I played a grand slam final, a Masters 1000 final. The system is just a disaster.”
Ash Barty was forced to reject criticism after she retaining her world No. 1 ranking despite hardly playing in 2020.
Russia’s Daniil Medvedev jumped to world No. 2 this week after winning his 10th career title in Marseille on Sunday.
Medvedev is the highest-rated player outside of Federer, Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray in 15 years.
“I am really happy,” he said. “I knew that I would become number two … [but] it is always better when you step up the rankings when you do something great,” he said.
“It is great for the self-esteem that just before becoming number two on Monday, I win a tournament.”
Medvedev trails Djokovic, to whom he lost in the Australian Open final last month, by more than 2000 points with no end in sight to his reign as No.1.
Djokovic last week broke Federer’s record of 310 weeks spent as world No. 1 and Medvedev believers the Serbian could hit 400 weeks.
– with AAP