Kerber returns and ends Sharapov

The tournament in Indian Wells was to become a new episode of the battle for the first place in the women's rating. 375 points between Serena Williams and Angelik Kerber - this is so insignificant difference that the talk of changing the leader of the women's classification would invariably arise before every major tournament.

The American, who regained the first line after the triumph at the Australian Open, did not go to the court after Melbourne. She could have stayed on the tennis throne if she had not lost the Indian Wells before the semi-finals. But this does not happen: the day before the start of the tournament, the superstar withdrew from the competition, citing a knee injury. The same problem that arose in last year's US Open.

Williams Jr. was waiting in Indian Wells for the planned training on Monday night, then Tuesday morning, but did not wait, and several hours later her official statement was issued. "Unfortunately, I have to withdraw from the tournaments in Indian Wells and Miami, I could not train because of my knees, and I'm very disappointed that I can not be there, I will move forward and keep positive. It will become possible, "Serena wrote.

After that Kerber must have breathed a sigh of relief. She will return to the first line, and this time she will not even have to do anything herself. Although the German tennis player assures that the rating for her is not an end in itself. It is much more important to once again feel self-reliance and to return the champion game. "I know last year: if you play well and consistently, the results will come, and with them automatically the first place in the ranking." That's what I keep in mind, "said Angelik in an interview with the Los Angeles Times." I do not think about the ranking And about the glasses. "

Kerber first became the first racket of the world on September 12 last year, and then it was entirely her credit. In order to climb to the top, the German needed to win the US Open. To win such a victory "on demand" is expensive, and in September its leadership looked absolutely fair.

She finished the first year of last year, and the beginning of this year turned out to be not very successful for her. Defeat in the fourth round of the Australian Open from Koko Vandevay and two lost matches Daria Kasatkina is not at all what one of the leaders of women's tennis can be proud of. Unable to defend the title at the Australian Open, Angelika lost first place in the ranking after 20 weeks. However, she could return there after the elite February competitions in Dubai. But there she was satisfied only with a victory, and the German in the semifinals lost to Elina Svitolina - for the third time in a row. That failure Kerber explained with problems with the right knee.

Now the first place in the rating to her, in fact, was presented. Officially the German will return to the top line on March 20, already after the tournament in Indian Wells, and will stay there until at least April 2. That is, he will add at least two more to his 20 weeks at the head of the world classification and will already bypass such outstanding players as Kim Clijsters (20 weeks), Tracy Austin (21) and Maria Sharapova (21).

Another thing is that the rating comes with a good game, and a game with a high rating is not necessary. Can Kerber regain last year's stability and begin to show results that are expected of her?

Directly in Indian Wells, which Kerber calls one of his most beloved tournaments, Angelica has not won matches for three seasons. Two consecutive semifinals (2012-2013) was followed by a series of three defeats. "In fact, I feel great," she said on the eve of the tournament, "I know that I have nothing to lose, I lost the first match last year, but I know for sure that I can play better in this."

As for Serena, she spent seven weeks in the rank of the first racket of the world, bringing their total number to 309, but she did not play any official matches in this status. Although the rating does not seem to be what most worries about the world's women's tennis leader at the moment. Otherwise, she would use every opportunity to fight for him. Now the youngest of the sisters will not go to court for at least a month, or even longer.

Serena is not announced for the first half of April. She can compete in a tournament in Charleston, where she will then have to ask for a wild card, or her return may be postponed to major European ground tournaments late April-early May. And there is already full speed to prepare for the Roland Garros.