Roger Federer Benefits From Recent ATP Rankings Update

Published 03/03/2021, 2:52 PM EST
Roger Federer of Switzerland celebrates his victory over David Goffin of Belgium in the Rolex Shanghai Masters at the Qi Zhong Tennis Centre in Shanghai, China. (Photo by TPN/Getty Images)


Roger Federer begins his long-awaited return to the sport next week. But before that, he shocked his fans and the tennis world as he withdrew from Miami Open 2021. It was a surprising decision, as Federer is the defending champion in Miami and was set to lose his 1000 points. But now, to his relief, he will only lose half of it because of the latest ATP rule change.

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Roger Federer of Switzerland looks on during his match. (Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

Since tennis resumed from the coronavirus break in August 2020, the ATP has been following the ‘best of’ method for its rankings. The ‘best of’ method considered the best performance of the players between 2019 and 2020.

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This safeguarded players from losing their points in case they didn’t want to travel during the troublesome COVID-19 period. Thus Federer didn’t drop much in the rankings despite playing only one tournament in 2020.

Now ATP had extended the above method, till mid-March 2021. This again benefitted Federer as he further missed the start of 2021 season. But now it was thought that Federer would lose 1000 points from Miami Open 2021 as it begins in the last week of March and had the Swiss master as its defending champion.

Roger Federer last played at Australian Open 2020. (Photo by Mike Owen/Getty Images)

Yet, Federer now only loses 500 points as ATP has extended the best of method till August 9th 2021, albeit with a twist. Now points won in tournaments that were not held in 2020 and earlier happened between 4th March to 5th August 2019 will be halved. Thus Federer will lose only 500 points and keep the other 500. Players will keep all 2020 points in case they don’t better it in 2021.

Could Roger Federer drop in the ATP rankings?

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Federer current ranking points stand at 6630 points. Thus losing 500 points will put him behind Stefanos Tsitsipas in 6th. Tsitsipas is currently at 6595 points and will replace Federer in the top five of the ATP rankings after the conclusion of Miami Open 2021.

Roger Federer of Switzerland looks on during his match. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

Federer makes his return at Doha, Qatar next week. There he could earn 250 points, but that won’t be enough to salvage his top five spot. Nevertheless, Federer is still far from leaving the top 10, and that record might have been threatened if he were to drop all his points.

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Bhavishya Mittal

975 articles

Bhavishya Mittal is a tennis author for EssentiallySports, who is currently pursuing his Bachelor's degree in Journalism from Manipal University. A former sports editor for The Manipal Journal, Bhavishya has also worked for The New Indian Express. He has a keen eye for many sports but he is a particularly ardent follower of tennis, with a zest to create riveting articles on the ever-evolving sport.

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