One-Handed Backhands Return to ATP Top 10 with Tsitsipas and Dimitrov

One-Handed Backhands Return to ATP Top 10 with Tsitsipas and Dimitrov

The ATP rankings have witnessed a resurgence of one-handed backhands in the Top 10, with Stefanos Tsitsipas and Grigor Dimitrov leading the charge. Tsitsipas’ victory at the Monte Carlo Masters propelled him back into the elite, joining Dimitrov, who had ended a six-week drought of one-handed backhands in the Top 10 after his Miami Open final appearance.

This marks the first time since October 2021 that two players with one-handed backhands have graced the Top 10. Tsitsipas, who had been the lone representative since Dominic Thiem’s departure in 2021, now finds himself at his highest ranking since January 2023.

Another notable move in the Top 10 is Casper Ruud’s ascent to No. 6, his highest ranking in over seven months. The Norwegian’s impressive run in Monte Carlo, including a victory over Novak Djokovic, has earned him a significant boost.

Ugo Humbert and Ben Shelton have also made strides, with Humbert reaching a career-high of No. 13 and Shelton becoming the new American men’s No. 1. Meanwhile, Sumit Nagal has made history as the first Indian player to win a Masters 1000 match on clay, propelling him to a career-high of No. 80.

On the WTA side, there were no major changes in the rankings due to the absence of events last week. However, 21-year-old Jessica Bouzas Maneiro made her Top 100 debut after reaching the final of an ITF Circuit event in Spain.

Dimitrov Embraces Mission to Revive One-Handed Backhand in ATP Top 10

Dimitrov Embraces Mission to Revive One-Handed Backhand in ATP Top 10

Grigor Dimitrov, the former world No. 3, is on a mission to revive the one-handed backhand in the ATP’s Top 10. With Stefanos Tsitsipas’ recent departure from the elite group, Dimitrov is the last remaining player with this visually-appealing shot.

Dimitrov acknowledges the significance of the one-handed backhand’s decline, stating, “It is a big deal.” He believes that the shot’s beauty lies in its complexity, requiring precise timing, ball-watching, and swing mechanics.

Despite the dwindling presence of one-handed backhands, Dimitrov remains optimistic. He is determined to keep the shot alive and inspire future generations. “I’m counting on every guy that’s still out there with one hand to keep on pushing and playing for that,” he said.

Dimitrov’s recent resurgence has seen him climb to No. 13 in the rankings. With just 45 points to defend in Indian Wells and Miami, he has a chance to return to the Top 10 for the first time since 2018.

However, Dimitrov’s focus is not solely on rankings. He is driven by a desire to overcome personal challenges and achieve his goals. “For me, I have a different quest, I have different battles to fight right now,” he said.

In the third round of Indian Wells, Dimitrov will face No. 21 seed Adrian Mannarino. Dimitrov has a perfect 4-0 record against the Frenchman.

Dimitrov’s determination to revive the one-handed backhand and his unwavering focus on personal growth make him an inspiring figure in the tennis world. His journey serves as a reminder that even in the face of changing trends, passion and perseverance can prevail.

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