Saturday, 5 October 2013
NADAL RETURNS TO NO. 1 BY REACHING BEIJING FINAL
Rafael Nadal will become No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Rankings on Monday after reaching the China Open final.
Nadal will contest his 13th championship match of a remarkable season after World No. 5 Tomas Berdych retired at 2-4 in the first set in their Beijing semi-final on Saturday.
The left-hander extended his FedEx ATP Head2Head over the Czech No. 1 to 16-3. Nadal has now won his last 15 clashes against Berdych.
The 27-year-old Spaniard has had two stints at the summit of men’s professional tennis for a total of 102 weeks. Nadal first became No. 1 on 18 August 2008 for a period of 46 weeks. He regained top spot from Roger Federer on 7 June 2010 and added 56 weeks to his tally until relinquishing No. 1 to Novak Djokovic on 4 July 2011.
Since returning from seven-month absence due to a left knee injury in February, Nadal has compiled a 65-3 match record on the season. He has won 10 titles from 12 finals, including the Roland Garros (d. Ferrer) and US Open (d. Djokovic) crowns plus five ATP World Tour Masters 1000 trophies.
By reaching the final, Nadal is one win away from claiming his first China Open title since 2005.
He'll attempt to retain the year-end No. 1 ranking for the first time since 2010 and the third time overall (also ’08).