FLUSHING MEADOW, NY – If you play the week before a Grand Slam, and make a unlikely run, you’re going to be rewarded.
Magda Linette, a 27-year-old from Poland, maximized by going from three rounds of qualifying to her first career WTA Title, beating Camila Giorgi in the final of the Bronx Open.
Conversely, if you do it one year – and either don’t play or don’t perform the next – you’ll take the hit.
A year ago, Aryna Sabalenka completed a brilliant US Open preseason with a semifinal in Cincinnati and a title in New Haven, which was a Premier-level event with the points that go along with it.
She made a nice run in New York, as well, getting to the second week and losing in three sets to eventual champion Naomi Osaka.
Now ranked in the top 10, Sabalenka didn’t play the new Bronx Open replacement event, which just an International. She reached the San Jose final and the third round in Cincinnati, but drops four spots and out of the top 10 by not defending New Haven.
ON THE UPSWING
Su-Wei Hsieh (TPE): No. 30 ==========> No. 28
Maria Sakkari (GRE): No. 31 ==========> No. 29 (Sakkari ties her career-high ranking, without having actually done anything).
Karolina Muchova (CZE): No. 47 ==========> No. 44 (The Wimbledon quarterfinalist makes her first appearance since then, reaching the Bronx quarters and losing a tough, tough one to eventual champion Linette).
Camila Giorgi (ITA): No. 58 ==========> No. 48 (The Italian is back in the top 50 with a final in the Bronx).
Magda Linette (POL): No. 80 ==========> No. 53 (The 27-year-old made her third third-round run at a major at Wimbledon. But after not getting out of qualifying at the Premier 5s, she got through three qualifying around in the Bronx, and five more matches in the main draw to win her first WTA Tour title. The career high brings her as close to the top 50 as she’s ever been, in her 11th year as a pro).
Bernarda Pera (USA): No. 69 ==========> No. 65 (We don’t know why the Croatian-American got wild cards into Cincinnati and the Bronx, but getting to the quarters last week helped her ranking a bit. She was moments away from beating Katerina Siniakova in the second set, before falling in three.
Anastasia Potapova (RUS): No. 76 ==========> No. 72
Anna Blinkova (RUS): No. 93 ==========> No. 84
Maria Camila Osorio Serrano (COL): No. 328 ==========> No. 271 (This year’s Bogota quarterfinalist, still just 17, hits a career high after winning a $25K ITF in Guayaquil Ecuador last week. She plans to play the junior US Open next week – the final Slam of her junior eligibility – and should be the No. 4 seed. She reached the junior semis a year ago).
ON THE DOWNSWING
Aryna Sabalenka (BLR): No. 9 ==========> No. 13
Julia Goerges (GER): No. 27 ==========> No. 30
Carla Suárez Navarro (ESP): No. 29 ==========> No. 33
Monica Puig (PUR): No. 44 ==========> No. 59 (Puig, whose coaching situation got a lot of play last week, drops out of the top 50 after not defending a nice run in New Haven a year ago. From three rounds of qualifying to the semis, including an upset over No. 2 seed over Caroline Garcia in the quarters).
Daria Gavrilova (AUS): No. 84 ==========> No. 95
Samantha Stosur (AUS): No. 132 ==========> No. 136
Magdalena Rybarikova (SVK): No. 149 ==========> No. 163