Federer Stokes Battle For No. 1
The battle for No. 1 is now red hot. With his record eighth Wimbledon title on Sunday, Roger Federer greatly improves his chances of returning to World No. 1 later this year after celebrating his fifth tour-level title of the season at SW19.
On Monday, when the new Emirates ATP Rankings are released, Federer will climb to No. 3, the first time he's been inside the Top 3 in almost 11 months.
The Swiss slipped from No. 3 to No. 4 on 22 August last year and, after missing the remainder of the season after last year's Wimbledon, slipped to as low as No. 17 before winning the Australian Open in January.
Looking ahead, however, it's likely Federer will rise even higher as he and Nadal look set to battle for the coveted year-end No. 1 Emirates ATP Ranking. Amazingly, the pair first finished No. 1 and No. 2 for six consecutive years between 2005-2010. The prospect of the players finishing No. 1 and No. 2 again after a seven-year break – and 12 years after they first did – would be remarkable.
On Monday, Federer will be within 920 points of No. 2 Nadal and 1,205 points of current World No. 1 Andy Murray. But Federer has no points to defend for the remainder of the season, while Nadal has 370 points and Murray has a whopping 5,460 points to defend following his incredible run at the end of the 2016 season.
Recent history is on Federer's side: 11 of the past 14 Wimbledon champions have ended the year at No. 1.
Wimbledon Champion and Year-End No. 1s
Should Federer return to the top spot, he would join Pete Sampras with six year-end No. 1 finishes and become the oldest man to be No. 1. Federer, who turns 36 on 8 August, would surpass Andre Agassi, who was last No. 1 at 33 years old.
Federer debuted at No. 1 on 2 February 2004 and holds the record for most weeks (302) spent at No. 1. He was last on top during the first week of November 2012. Marin Cilic, who reached his first Wimbledon final, will remain at No. 6, a career-high for the Croatian.