Roger Federer set to become oldest No.1 in men’s tennis history

By @saihoops on
Roger Federer
Tennis - Australian Open - Melbourne, Australia, January 29, 2018. Roger Federer of Switzerland poses with the men's singles trophy during the winner's photoshoot at the government house in Melbourne, Australia. Reuters / Issei Kato

World No. 2 Roger Federer is on the brink of becoming the oldest World No. 1 in the history of the Open Era. The 36-year-old Federer has agreed to play next week's ATP World Tour 500 series event at Rotterdam, the Netherlands as a wildcard entrant. 

Federer, with 9,605 ATP points, would seal the World No. 1 ranking with a semi-final finish at the Dutch hard court event, according to several reports. Federer, who hasn't played at Rotterdam since 2015, trails World no. 1 Rafael Nadal by just 155 points in the latest ATP rankings.

The Swiss Master would be surpassing American tennis great Andre Agassi as the oldest player to reach the apex of tennis. On April 28, 2003, Agassi, at age 33 years and 13 days, became the oldest World No. 1 in the Open Era (1968-to date). Though Agassi's stint atop the rankings lasted just two weeks, the American recaptured the No. 1 ranking on June 16, 2003. He remained World No. 1 for 12 weeks until Sept. 7, 2003.

Federer will headline the Rotterdam Open alongside World No. 4 Grigor Dimitrov and World No. 5 Alexander Zverev, along with fellow Swiss star Stan Wawrinka.

Roger Federer enters 2018 Rotterdam Open

“The tournament is special for me. I remember playing for the first time in 1999 as it was one of the first events where I got the chance to play at the highest level,” Federer told the official website of the ATP World Tour 500 series tournament. Federer won the Rotterdam Open in 2012 and 2015. 

Richard Krajicek, director of the tournament, is thrilled that the 2018 Australian Open champion will grace the event in Holland. “After his fantastic result at the Australian Open, it is tremendous news that he will be joining us in Rotterdam. It is a crown to the celebration of the history of our tournament. The last 12 months have shown his tremendous drive. It makes perfect sense that he wants to capitalise on his current form.”

The timeless Roger Federer re-wrote the history books recently by capturing a record Grand Slam title No. 20 at the 2018 Australian Open. With the victory at Melbourne Park, Federer joined women's tennis legends Margaret Court (24), Serena Williams (23) and Steffi Graf (22), in the exclusive 20s club. The 2018 Rotterdam Open gets underway Monday night AEDT at Ahoy Rotterdam in the Netherlands.