Tennis: Pe’er jumps to No. 22 in the world rankings

22-year-old jumps six places after reaching 3rd round of Australian Open.

Shahar Pe’er continued her climb up the world rankings on Monday, jumping six places to No. 22 after reaching the third round of the Australian Open.
The 22-year-old Israeli, who was ranked as high as No. 15 in the world in 2007, dropped all the way down to 68th last August, but has consistently improved her results since, and her rise up the rankings has put her in a promising position ahead of the rest of the year.
Dudi Sela dropped five places to No. 46 after his first round exit in Melbourne, with Yoni Erlich leaping 87 places to No. 103 in the doubles rankings thanks to his excellent performance in the Australian Open which saw him and partner Arnaud Clement reach the quarterfinals of the year’s first Grand Slam.
Australian Open champions Roger Federer and Serena Williams maintained their No. 1 rankings.
Federer, who beat Britain’s Andy Murray in the Australian Open men’s final in straight sets Sunday, will begin his 268th week as the ATP’s No. 1 and match Jimmy Connors, currently in third place, for total number of weeks as world No. 1.
Pete Sampras leads the career list with 286 weeks at No. 1, followed by Ivan Lendl with 270.
Novak Djokovic took over as No. 2, Murray is third and injured Rafael Nadal drops to No. 4. It marks the first time that Nadal has dropped out of the world’s top three since his debut there in June 2005.
Nadal has been cleared of a recurrence of the knee tendinitis that sidelined him for nine weeks last year. A small muscle tear sustained at the Australian Open, where he lost in the quarterfinals to Murray, will keep him out for the next month.
“It is not important for me, the ranking issue and losing a few spots –that’s normal when you are not able to compete,” Nadal said.
There was movement on the women’s side, with Li Na becoming the firstChinese player ever to enter the top 10 when she reached a career-highNo. 10 following her semifinal run in Melbourne.
Williams, who beat Justine Henin in Saturday’s Australian Open final,has extended her current stretch at No. 1 to 15 weeks. Officialrankings released Monday by the WTA show Williams begins her 88thcareer week as the top-ranked player.
AP contributed to this report.