World No. 7 Casper Ruud admits that having a shot at the top ranking gives him extra motivation to go out and do well in the rest of the US Open. On Tuesday, Ruud defeated Matteo Berrettini 6-1 6-4 7-6 (4) to progress into his first US Open semifinal.
Ruud is now potentially just a win away from reaching the top ranking. "I don't want to think too much about it honestly," Ruud said on court afterwards. "Of course, it’s something that all young players dream about.
So if I'm in a position to do it, let's see if I can accomplish it. Honestly, I had no idea that I had a chance to become world number one, one day, you know, now I'm in the semi-finals. Let's see how it goes. But of course, it's a little bit of extra motivation to dig in and even if you're down on the score [you have] to keep fighting, you never know what's gonna happen.
And if I'm very, very lucky, I can leave New York as world number one, so I'm trying to go for it of course”.
How Ruud can become the new world No. 1
Ruud, Carlos Alcaraz and Rafael Nadal all have a chance to overtake Daniil Medvedev at the top spot.
Nadal is out of the tournament so Ruud and Alcaraz have everything in their hands. If both Ruud and Alcaraz fail to reach the US Open final, Nadal would overtake Nadal at the top spot. If Ruud reaches the US Open final and Alcaraz doesn't, he will overtake Medvedev at the top spot.
If both Ruud and Alcaraz reach the final, then the winner of that match would also be the new top ranked player. In the US Open semifinal, Ruud plays Karen Khachanov. Previously, Ruud won his lone meeting against Khachanov in 2020 Rome.