Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic is the new Women’s Tennis Association No. 1 seed, an achievement that will become official once the new rankings are released following Wimbledon.
Pliskova, 25, came into Wimbledon as the three seed but fell to Magdalena Rybarikova in the second round. While the result was initially a shock, Rybarikova has proved it wasn’t a fluke: She’s into the semis at the All England Club. Top-seeded Angelique Kerber, who needed to reach the final to retain her ranking, lost in the fourth round. Two seed Simone Halep, who needed to reach the semis to jump to No. 1, lost in the quarters. That opened the door for Pliskova to take over the top spot.
Pliskova has won three titles in 2017. More important for the rankings, she has won four in the past 52 weeks, the timetable by which points are calculated. The big result that helped her gain the world’s top spot came at Wimbledon warm-up Aegon, where she defeated three top-10 players en route to the title. Kerber, on the other hand, lost to Jo Konta in the quarters. Halep also lost in the quarters, falling to Caroline Wozniacki.
The new world No. 1 took to Instagram to share her excitement for her first top ranking:
I will definitely remember today! Although right now I am not celebrating a victory on the court, I have become the world number one. And this really means a lot to me. Actually, I can’t even realize what I have achieved. I worked very hard, as did all the people around me. Thanks to everyone who believed in me, as well as to those who doubted. Being the world number one is also a big responsibility for me. I’m aware of that and I can promise I will do my best not to disappoint in this role. Hopefully I’ll succeed. Once again I’d like to thank my family, my team of the closest people around me. Without you I wouldn’t be where I am. ❤️ Dnešní den si budu rozhodně pamatovat. Přestože zrovna nejásám po vyhraném zápase přímo na kurtu, stala jsem se světovou jedničkou. A to pro mě znamená strašně moc. Vlastně si ani pořádně nedokážu uvědomit, čeho jsem dosáhla. Pracovala jsem opravdu tvrdě, stejně jako všichni lidé kolem mě. Díky všem, kteří mi věřili a vlastně i těm, kteří o mně pochybovali. Být světovou jedničkou je pro mě zároveň velká zodpovědnost, to si uvědomuju a můžu slíbit, že udělám maximum abych v téhle roli nezklamala. Snad se to povede. Ještě jednou děkuji rodině, mému týmu a nejbližším kolem mě. Bez vás bych nebyla tam, kde jsem.
A post shared by Karolina Pliskova (@karolinapliskova) on Jul 11, 2017 at 12:59pm PDT
Though Pliskova has yet to capture a major, she has been consistent in such tournaments. In each of the three slams previous to Wimbledon, she reached at least the quarterfinals, including a finals appearance at last year’s U.S. Open.
Kerber falls from the top spot for the first time in 34 weeks.