Many congratulations to the amazing Roger Federer, not only the greatest of all time in tennis, but the man who some are claiming as the greatest athlete ever! Tomorrow he officially breaks the all time record held by Pete Sampras for weeks at #1 in the world!
I still remember the sinking feeling a couple years ago when Roger lost to Tomas Berdych in the quarter finals at Wimbledon when realization hit that he was going to lose the #1 ranking again to Rafael Nadal when he was oh so close to breaking the all time record. And with the run Rafa was on at the time, going on to win his first U.S. Open title, and Roger not having the results we were all used to, it was looking increasing less likely that he was going to be able to get back there, especially with the rise of Novak Djokovic in 2011.
However, many people forgot that we were talking about Roger Federer! The man who had won 16 major titles knew it was still very possible to take that record, and he knew how to get it done. After finding his focus once again after the severely disappointing loss to Djokovic in the semis (for the 2nd year in a row after hold match points!), he raised his game and began winning title after title, culminating in the so-sweet victory at SW19 last Sunday, bringing him back to #1 once again.
Though it certainly would have still been sweet to break the record back then, it would have seemed just a natural result, one more to add to the already amazing record book. But to have it almost out of reach for a couple years, thinking maybe that would be one record he just wouldn't hold, and then to come back when so many had written him off, is just completely incredible! It kind of makes those difficult years worth it, and the respect for him all the higher.
How long will he hold #1 now? So much will depend on the Olympics. I certainly am dreaming of the gold, and seeing how many more weeks we can add onto the already amazing 287!