Top 20 facts about Roger Federer
There's very little Roger Federer has failed to accomplish. After breaking down the numbers, here are the Top 20 facts about Federer.
Another tournament, another trophy for Roger Federer. His latest came at the Masters Cup in Shanghai -- the third time in the last four years he won the year-end championships.
Federer dominated the 2006 season, breaking his own points record, with 1,674. In the last three seasons, the Swiss tennis genius has gone 259-15 (.945) with 34 titles. And, that doesn't even make the list of the top 20 facts that help explain his on-court brilliance.
Federer will take a 29-match win streak into the 2007 season. He hasn't lost since the second round at Cincinnati to Andy Murray in August. It's the fifth time in his career he's won at least 20 in a row. Since 1990, only two other players have won 20 consecutive matches multiple times: Pete Sampras (three times) and Stefan Edberg (twice). Federer's longest winning streak came in 2005 after Rafael Nadal defeated him in the semifinals of the French Open. After that loss, Federer won 35 straight, a streak that lasted from June 6 to Nov. 20.
In 2001, at 19, Federer won his first career title. It came in Milan, Italy, where he defeated well-established players Goran Ivanisevic and Yevgeny Kafelnikov before knocking off Julien Boutter in the final. That was his only title of the season, but it was a sign of things to come.
In 2000, the 62nd-ranked Swiss upset Michael Chang in the first round of the Australian Open. Just 18 years old at the time, Federer won his second-round match before losing to Arnaud Clement.
Federer finished the 2003 season ranked No. 2 in the world, going 78-17. How dominant has he been since? In the last three seasons, he has lost a total of 15 matches. The only player he has lost to more than once in that period is Rafael Nadal.
Federer played in 17 tournaments this season and reached the final 16 times. His only blemish was a second-round loss to Murray before the U.S. Open. Dating to last season, Federer has failed to reach a tournament final just four times.
Federer reached his first ATP final on Spanish soil in October. By winning the Madrid Masters, he claimed a title in his 15th different country. Two weeks before that, Federer won his first career tournament in Japan. Overall, he has played in 23 countries in his career. China, Russia and Sweden are just a few of the countries in which he has not won a title.
Every once in a while, Federer shows the rest of the world he's human. Thirteen times he has lost in a tournament final. In fact, four times this season he has finished runner-up -- each time to his nemesis, Nadal.
The Masters Cup title was Federer's 12th title of 2006. James Blake, Nikolay Davydenko and Nadal tied for second with most wins in '06, with five. Federer, who won 11 titles in 2004 and 2005, is the first player since Thomas Muster in 1995 to win a dozen titles in a single season.
Federer now has 45 career titles, which ranks 11th in the Open era. Even with a below-average 2007, Federer would pass Rod Laver (47) and Boris Becker (49) on the list. Thirty-four of his 45 titles have been won since 2004.
After winning Madrid in mid-October, Federer became the first player in the Open era to record double-digit titles for three consecutive years. His season started with a title in Doha, Qatar, and culminated 11 months later with a Masters Cup championship.
His total of nine places him sixth on the all-time list. That's more than Andre Agassi, Ivan Lendl, Jimmy Connors and John McEnroe. With one more, Federer will tie Bill Tilden for fifth on the career list.
Federer became the seventh active player to achieve the No. 1 ranking early in 2004. Lleyton Hewitt ended 2001 and 2002 as the top player on tour, and his total of 80 weeks at No. 1 is second only to Federer's 143 weeks at the top among players still competing. The others: Andy Roddick, Juan Carlos Ferrero, Gustavo Kuerten, Marat Safin and Carlos Moya.
No question Blake made a significant jump on the ATP Tour this season. However, despite a career-high ranking of No. 4 and five titles, he has not been able to get by Federer. Including the Masters Cup final, Federer is now 6-0 against the American, including winning four times in 2006, dropping only one set.
On Feb. 2, 2004, Federer took the No. 1 ranking away from Andy Roddick. Since then, 147 weeks have passed and no player has challenged him for the top spot since. His total atop the rankings is the fifth longest since the inception of the rankings system in 1973. Only Sampras, Lendl, Connors and McEnroe have been there longer.
In Madrid last week, Federer won a record-equaling fourth Masters Series title -- the second straight year he won four Masters Series events. In doing so, he became the first player since the Masters Series tournaments started in 1990 to win four shields in back-to-back seasons. Earlier this year, Federer became the first player to win at Indian Wells and Miami in successive seasons.
Did you ever think the names Mertinak or Levinsky would be ranked ahead of Roger Federer? Well, they are -- in doubles. Currently, the world's top singles player is ranked No. 369 in doubles with a record of 3-3. His partner for all six matches has been his compatriot, Yves Allegro.
Federer finished 2006 with a career-high 92 match wins, 11 more that he had in 2005. He joins Lendl as the only players since 1980 to win at least 90 matches in a year. Lendl went 96-14 in 1981 and 106-9 in 1982.
Federer is the only player in history to win Wimbledon and the U.S. Open consecutively for three straight years. Before Federer, Bill Tilden (1920-21) and Don Budge (1937-38) were the only players to win Wimbledon and the U.S. Open back-to-back in two consecutive years.