Apologies for the absence over the last few weeks. Moving house does that to you.
Now then, with Roland Garros starting tomorrow, I have for you two tables showing clay court rankings on the ATP tour.
The first table ranks players according to their clay court performance over the last 52 weeks – very much the same method of ranking as the ATP does except only for clay court performances and on an ATP points per match basis. This allows for a level playing field for players who play a lot or a little on clay alike.
The second table ranks players on the same points per match basis (PPM) but only on their performances in the European clay court swing this year (including Houston but not including the two tournaments finishing today, Nice and Dusseldorf).
The second table is perhaps more relevant as it captures current form and does not rely on last year’s Roland Garros tournament (where for example Nadal and Tsonga did well relative to their performances in 2014).
Comparisons between the tables will show you the trend for each player.
So, what can we say:
- Nadal may only be the third favourite for Roland Garros based on form in the 2014 European clay court swing; with Wawrinka and Djokovic his two main contenders;
- Nishikori, Raonic and Dimitrov lead the new faces in the highest echelons of the men’s clay court game, and must be aiming for the final four;
- Bautista Agut, Giraldo, Garcia Lopez and of course Gulbis are the dark horses to knock out high ranking seeds;
- And finally, the likes of Tsonga and Fognini, despite previous good form and high hopes, have disappointed to date.
Pick out your own favourites. And enjoy terre battue fortnight.
Table 1: ATP clay court rankings (last 52 weeks); minimum 5 matches played
Table 2: Clay court rankings (European 2014 clay-court swing only); minimum 4 matches played