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Nadal out of top 10 for first time in 18 years

Alcaraz returned to No. 1

nadal-reuters-new (File) Rafael Nadal | Reuters

Carlos Alcaraz returned to No. 1 in the ATP rankings on Monday, replacing Novak Djokovic, and Rafael Nadal dropped out of the top 10 for the first time in 18 years.

Alcaraz rose one spot, swapping places with Djokovic, a day after ending Daniil Medvedev's 19-match winning streak by beating him in straight sets in the final at Indian Wells, California. Alcaraz, a 19-year-old from Spain who first ascended to No. 1 by winning the US Open in September, didn't drop a set in the hard-court tournament.

Djokovic has spent more weeks at No. 1 than any man or woman in tennis history. He did not play in Indian Wells because he is not allowed to enter the United States as a foreign citizen who is not vaccinated against Covid-19. He also will miss the Miami Open that begins this week; Alcaraz is the defending champion there.

Nadal has been sidelined since January by an injured hip flexor and he slipped four spots to No. 13 on Monday, ending a stay in the top 10 that began in April 2005. It is the longest such run in the ATP; Jimmy Connors is next on the list with about 15 years.

Djokovic and Nadal currently share the men's record of 22 Grand Slam singles titles.

Elena Rybakina's straight-set victory over Aryna Sabalenka for the Indian Wells trophy pushed Rybakina up three spots to a career-high No. 7 in the WTA rankings. Iga Swiatek remained at No. 1, followed by Sabalenka, who defeated Rybakina in the Australian Open final in January.

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