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There Are Still U.S. Guys in the Top 10, in My Mind

OK, here we are: quarterfinal time at the Masters tournament in and no American men made it that far. Actually, none made it as far as the 16s. This all coincides with the history-making turn in the rankings this week, where no U.S. man was in the top 10 for the first time in oh, about, forever.

But take a look at the rankings right now, where you have four players that haven't even won titles this year (Andy Murray, Nikolay Davydenko, Tomas Berdych and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga), and three that have missed big chunks of the year (again Davydenko and Tsonga, and Juan Martin del Potro). Can you make the case that Davydenko or del Potro should still be up there in the standings instead of Andy Roddick this year? (Murray and Berdych get a pass for making Slam finals.)

And Sam Querrey has won more titles than anyone not named Rafael Nadal in 2010. Look at Mardy Fish, too: Even though his winning streak in singles was snapped in Washington last week, he still took home the doubles. Americans have brought home a lot of hardware this season.

But it's not just them getting shut out, the whole ranking system is flawed. To me, I actually miss the much-maligned Race system, where the results were tallied to the standings on a yearly basis and I never thought I'd say that. If I was making a top 10 for the guys based on results this year, here's how it would look:

1. Rafael Nadal
2. Roger Federer
3. Robin Soderling
4. Andy Murray
5. Tomas Berdych
6. Andy Roddick
7. Novak Djokovic
8. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
9. David Ferrer
10. Sam Querrey

No muss, no fuss, and it looks like Americans are doing OK here to me. The whole system needs an overhaul: Why isn't Juan Carlos Ferrero being rewarded more for three titles won? Or Davydenko penalized for a poor season? Maybe the Race was the way to go after all.

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Comment by Van Sias on September 14, 2010 at 8:52am
Hey Mark, so sorry for the delay in commenting back! I like the fact that Sock won the junior title at the Open; very impressive. And I hope Harrison's performance at the Open wasn't a blip. That kid can really play!
Comment by Mark / The Mayor on August 17, 2010 at 8:16am
Great post Van - that is a valid way to look at the rankings, but long term I fear for our american hopes. Sam and Isner are great players, but just dont have the speed to stay in the top for very long or to make it to the very top of the game.

And did you hear Andy may have mono??? That can wreck him for a year easily. I was really hoping Andy could make it far in the Open this year. Hey, who is the next up and coming american player that I haven't heard of?

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