99 Not Out for Federer
Posted on November 26 2018
Back in 2001, a 19-year-old named Roger Federer won his first ATP tour title in Milan, the rest, as they say, is history. Today, Roger Federer, minus the pony-tail stands on 99 ATP Tour titles, just one short of a century of titles. Federer would become the second man to achieve this after Jimmy Connors reached a mammoth 109 tour titles.
Roger Federer by Mike McCune is licensed under CC BY 2.0
Whether Federer can reach 109 is another debate, but it would seem likely that he will achieve the incredible feat of 100 tournament victories. Since his first title back in 2001, Federer has only failed to win a title in one year - 2016, where he was severely hampered by injuries and only played 7 tournaments.
In the past two seasons, Federer has won 11 titles, and despite his more advanced age of 37 years, it would be a great surprise if he did not claim the title he needs in the next year.
Federer finished the 2018 season ranked number 3 in the world and so will be guaranteed a good seed and favorable draw in the early tournaments next year. This is an invaluable advantage, as it means he has plenty of time to build into a tournament.
With Federer playing fewer tournaments to manage his workload, it can sometimes take him a little bit longer to grow into a tournament, so the high seeding comes in pretty handy to guarantee he won’t play any top seeds until later in the tournament.
It might not come at a Grand Slam, it may not even come at a Masters 1000, but at some point, Federer will win that 100th title, and I’m sure most people would agree that he deserves nothing less.
Although there would be few people who doubt that Federer will reach 100 Tour titles, it remains to be seen whether he can improve on his 20 Grand Slam titles, a men’s open era record.
Federer picked up the Australian Open title in 2018, but chose not to play the French Open and went out in the quarter-finals of Wimbledon and last-16 of the US Open in what would be considered surprise loses.
This is not the first time that Federer’s Grand Slam chances have been written off, but you have to question whether he can still manage to come through 7 best of 5 set matches in a two week period.
Grand Slams are a grueling challenge for any player, but at 37 years of age, it’s got to have an effect.
But, with 20 slams already in the bag, Federer has absolutely nothing to lose. If he can get through the early rounds with minimal fuss, something he is very good at doing, then anything can happen.
To see Federer lift another Grand Slam title would be incredible, but first things first, let’s get to 100 titles.
Hopefully, Federer will get this out the way sooner rather than later, because he doesn’t want it hanging over him. The longer it takes him, the more pressure he will feel to finally reach this amazing milestone, but I have no doubt that he will become the ATPs second centurion at some point this coming year!