Rafa Nadal twist emerges after Nick Kyrgios' win over Daniil Medvedev
Rafa Nadal has the opportunity grab the World No.1 ranking off Daniil Medvedev at the Cincinnati Open after the Russian's second round loss to Nick Kyrgios this week.
Nadal has enjoyed a remarkable 2022 season having won both the Australian Open and French Open.
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The 22-time grand slam champion also reached the semi-final of Wimbledon, before he was forced to withdraw from his match against Kyrgios due to an abdominal injury.
Nadal also withdrew from the Canadian Open this week after admitting he was still suffering from the abdomen injury.
However, the Spaniard has the opportunity to jump Medvedev in the world rankings at Cincinnati next week.
Medvedev was knocked out in Toronto by an in-form Kyrgios.
The Russian was sent packing in his first match after a bye in the first round.
Due to his early loss as defending champion at the ATP 1000 event, Medvedev now faces the prospect of losing his World No.1 ranking to Nadal.
The Spaniard would have to win the Cincinnati Masters.
However, Medvedev will also face a tough task of holding onto his ranking at the US Open.
The Russian is the reigning champion and will be forced to defend his title.
Nadal will also have an opportunity to gain ranking points in New York considering he missed last year's grand slam due to injury.
Rafa Nadal leading ATP race
Nadal currently leads the year-end race to Turin.
The Spaniard sits on 5,620 points, well in front of fellow Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz on 4,280.
Alcaraz lost to Tommy Paul in the first round of the Canadian Open.
Novak Djokovic won't have the opportunity to finish the year as World No.1 due to his inability to play the US Open or the build-up tournaments because of his unvaccinated status.
This week, Nadal delighted his legion of tennis fans after announcing he will make his return at the Cincinnati Masters in the lead-up to the US Open.
The 22-time grand slam champion hasn't played since being forced to withdraw from Wimbledon before his semi-final against Nick Kyrgios due to an abdominal injury.
He wasn't fit enough to play at the current Canadian Open in Montreal, but on Wednesday announced that he will be back in action in Cincinnati.
"Very happy to play again in Cincy. Flying there tomorrow," the 36-year-old wrote on Instagram.
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