Latest WTA Rankings, Monday March 2

andrew hendrie:

Aryna Sabalenka is on the cusp of re-entering the top 10 after winning the Doha title, while Heather Watson is back in the top 50 following her Acapulco triumph.

Sabalenka captured her second WTA Premier-5 level title on the bounce, adding the Qatar Total Open title to the Wuhan silverware she secured towards the end of 2019.

The 21-year-old fired 21 winners to just 15 unforced errors as she defeated 2018 champion Petra Kvitova 6-3 6-3 in just 74 minutes.

After winning titles in Wuhan and the WTA Elite Trophy last year, Sabalenka is now 22-6 dating back to September.

“I couldn’t really expect the title for the first time in Doha… I’m really happy, it feels so special for me,” she said.

Sabalenka rises two places in the latest WTA rankings to No. 11 in the world and is just 10 points adrift of No. 10 Naomi Osaka heading into Indian Wells.

The Belarusian also leapfrogged Kvitova in the rankings, with the Czech slipping one spot to No. 12.

Meanwhile, Watson has reaped the rewards of winning her first WTA title since 2016 in Acapulco, climbing 20 rungs on the rankings ladder to re-enter the top 50 at No. 49.

Watson needed a whopping 10 championship points to take out rising 17-year-old Leylah Fernandez in the final, eventually prevailing 6-4 6-7(8) 6-1 in two hours and 46 minutes.

“I’m so happy to get my fourth title,” Watson said after her win. “It’s been a few years, so I’m just really, really happy I came through that match.”

It’s been a tough couple of seasons for Watson, but now the Brit finds herself just 11 spots off her career-high ranking of No. 38.

Fernandez continues her rapid rise up the WTA rankings, shooting up 64 spots to a career-high mark of No. 126 after qualifying for the Acapulco main draw and advancing to her first tour-level final.

Two WTA International tournaments take place this week in Lyon and Monterrey as players fine-tune their games before the first Premier Mandatory event of the season in Indian Wells.

Australian Open champion and World No. 5 Sofia Kenin leads the field in Lyon, while struggling World No. 7 Elina Svitolina searches for form in Monterrey alongside the likes of veteran Grand Slam champions Victoria Azarenka and Kim Clijsters.

Latest WTA Rankings, Monday March 2


1. ?? Ashleigh Barty
2. ?? Simona Halep
3. ?? Karolina Pliskova
4. ?? Bianca Andreescu
5. ?? Sofia Kenin
6. ?? Kiki Bertens
7. ?? Elina Svitolina
8. ?? Belinda Bencic (+1)
9. ?? Serena Williams (-1)
10. ?? Naomi Osaka
11. ?? Aryna Sabalenka (+2)
12. ?? Petra Kvitova (-1)
13. ?? Madison Keys (-1)
14. ?? Petra Martic
15. ?? Garbine Muguruza (+1)
16. ?? Johanna Konta (-1)
17. ?? Elena Rybakina
18. ?? Marketa Vondrousova
19. ?? Alison Riske
20. ?? Maria Sakkari

Notable Top 100 Ranking Movements This Week


?? Svetlana Kuznetsova (+14 to No. 32)
?? Ons Jabeur (+5 to No. 39)
?? Heather Watson (+20 to No. 49)
?? Wang Yafan (-28 to No. 84)
?? Anastasia Potapova (+8 to No. 89)