Roger Federer reveals only regret of failing to catch Rafael Nadal in world No. 1 race
Roger Federer insists he’s ‘OK’ with ending the season as world No. 2 behind Rafael Nadal, despite coming agonisingly close to catching the Spaniard at the top of the rankings.
Both Federer and Nadal have shared the Grand Slam titles this year with the latter winning at the French Open and US Open and the former victorious in Australia and Wimbledon.
It has been an incredible rise back to the top of the game after both players struggled with injury woes over the past few years.
Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray have shared the limelight with the Briton becoming World No1 at the end of 2016.
But it has been a season ravaged by injuries for Murray while Djokovic also ruled himself out of action for the rest of the year ahead of the US Open.
Should Nadal beat Hyeon Chung on Wednesday in the final Masters 1000 event of the season, he will secure the year-end top spot, with Federer unable to chase down his points total.
The Swiss could have matched Pete Sampras’ record of ending the year as the world’s best player on six occasions but chose to withdraw from the Paris Masters to all but end his chances.
That’s taking nothing away from the achievements of both Nadal and Federer, who now have 35 Grand Slam titles between them.
The Swiss tennis legend remains on top with 19 but his rival will finish 2017 at the summit of the world rankings with one win at the Paris Masters.
And Federer admits he regrets not making it a closer battle with Nadal for the year-end No1 spot.
“Ever since Rafa won the US Open, I knew it was going to be very, very difficult,” Federer told The Wall Street Journal.
“I wish I could have chased [No. 1] more — my only regret is that I couldn’t have chased it more at Cincinnati and the US Open.
“That was a pity — but Rafa played a full schedule, and he deserves it. I’m OK with that.”
Federer pulled out of this week’s Paris Masters after winning the Swiss Indoors title at the weekend.