Roger Federer Is Now No. 1 In ATP Rankings For 2012 Points
by Tom Gainey | March 18th, 2012, 11:50 pm

I mentioned this in an earlier post, but i’ll give it its own special page. With his victory today at the BNP Parisbas Open, Roger Federer has moved past Novak Djokovic for the top ranking in 2012 points only.

Thus far, with three titles now and semifinals in Doha and the Australian Open, Federer has accrued 2,820 points in 2012. Australian Open winner Djokovic is second at 2,540.

Federer’s 2,820 is already more points than all but the Top 8 amassed last year! So Roger’s really racking them up this season.

In the 52-week ranking system, Federer remains ranked No. 3 behind Djokovic and No. 2 Rafael Nadal. But if he reaches the Sony Ericsson Open final Federer could overtake Nadal in the next rankings after Miami.

Also, i’m no mathematician but it appears Federer has a chance to become No. 1 BEFORE the French Open. However it’s an incredible longshot. The 30-year-old would have to win all four upcoming Masters 1000 events and have Djokovic completely falter. Highly unlikely.

And remember at the French Open, Federer beat Djokovic so he’ll have more points to defend in Paris than Novak. If things do continue to go well for Federer his big chance will come at Wimbledon and then the Olympics.

Here are the current ATP Rankings – 2012 points only:

1. Federer 2,820
2. Djokovic 2,540
3. Nadal 1,800
4. Ferrer 1,405
5. Del Potro 1,315
6. Murray 1,280

See the full list here.

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47 Comments for Roger Federer Is Now No. 1 In ATP Rankings For 2012 Points

Roger Federer Fan Says:

The ranking system sucks.

They should either consider only 2012 or from 2011 US Open ….. Federer would have been No.1 by now …… 52 weeks ranking system is meaningless.

Steve 27 Says:

They should either consider only 2012 or from 2011 US Open ….. Federer would have been No.1 by now …… 52 weeks ranking system is meaningless.

Michael Says:

At the moment, it appears very good for Roger. Let us see how the rest of the year unfolds. But, for sure he has the best shot to become No.2. However, the dampener is that Nadal might come to dominate with the clay court season starting right after Miami. However, the silver lining for Roger is that he can earn a good number of points in Clay court Masters

RZ Says:

As much as I’d love for Fed to be #1 for at least two more weeks (so he can break the record), it would seem wrong for him to get it before the French, seeing how Djokovic holds 3 slam titles. But it’s a numbers game…

Sienna Says:

Roger Federer Fan Says:
The ranking system sucks.

They should either consider only 2012 or from 2011 US Open ….. Federer would have been No.1 by now …… 52 weeks ranking system is meaningless.


Ajet Says:


I don’t think Roger Federer Fan seriously means what he posts, I think he’s actually the sarcastic one! he’s just the opposite of humble rafa! i can see the sarcasm in his posts! ;)

Nirmal Kumar Says:

We are just getting into Nadal territory. Let’s be aware of it. These HC tournaments are just a buildup for Nadal to dominate the clay. Last year, Novak spoiled his clean slate, but I doubt it will happen this year. Typically Rafa takes 3 masters and FO during this period.

If this math changes this year, then we can talk about Roger getting back to No 2.

But if Nadal has a clean slate in clay masters, and Roger does his usual stuff of reaching semis or finals, what is the math for Rafa to reach No 1, assuming Novak is going to falter.

I don’t think Novak has won clay masters before last year. Looking at his form this year, he is beatable on clay by other Top 3 or probably guys like Ferrer who gave him a tough time in AO.

raul Says:

i think the BIG CHANCE for federer to be number 1 will come before the US open.
he need just stay on the level in the clay swing.
if he do well in wimbledon, olimpycs, montreal and cincinnati where he only defend 600 points and can add as much as 5000, and those courts is their playground, he will be number 1, and since the US open is also his playground, that number spot could stay well until the end of the year.

Rahul Says:

If Federer can somehow squeeze to no. 2 in the rankings, and Rafa falls in Novak’s half that will give Federer a much better shot at the slams.

Steve 27 Says:

the Serbian has the egg, you never know.
Yes, Ajet, I know what he meant. Do you live in India? how many people are you? 1100 millions? You know Federer signed a contract to come to South America? cheers for his fans!

Michael Says:


Novak has just been beaten in two tournaments and immediately the prophet of doom has been forecast. Nothing is certain in Tennis. What is the guarantee that Nadal will be dominating the Clay courts as he has been doing in the past. Even last year, Novak spoiled his moments at Madrid and Rome. And in the French too, Nadal appeared very vulnerable even extended by Isner to five sets. Novak too is a specialist on Clay and he can give trouble to Nadal while most other players are improving on this surface. Roger too with his current form cannot be discounted for the clay season. All said and done, Nadal cannot take much points from his clay court win as he would like to. The problem for Nadal is most players are now confident against him after Novak showed the way. I would say Miami can give us pointers to the year ahead. If Roger goes on to win that too then we will have the momentum going for him. On the other hand if Nadal or Novak or even Murray wins, they will feel very confident for the year ahead.

scineram Says:

Even more importantly since US Open he has 5810 points. Djokovic has 3100, Nadal has 2240. If he wants to break the ranking record this is his chance after the US Open.

Gordo Says:

We will have to see where the boys fall in the Miami draw. If Rafa and Roger wind up in the same half of the draw then Federer can become #2 by winning Miami, for he will have halted Nadal in the semis.

Federer needs to get to #2 as quickly as possible, for then the dynamic changes, as he can not meet Djokovic before the final of any tournament they are both in, and instead of – as is now the case – he has to meet one of Djokovic OR Nadal in the semis and then the other in the final, assuming all 3 get that far, if Federer is #2 then that could still happen, but the odds say that 50% of the time Nadal and Djokovic will be in the same half of the draw, giving Fed a clear path to the final. And obviously if Nadal and Djokovic meet in the semis, one of them can not collect more than semi-final points.

Ajet Says:


i don’t think nadal’ll dominate the clay season as easily as you think. let’s see. i don’t want nadal to dominate eiher, but that’s another thing. i want djoker and fed to beat nadal as much as they can.

Yes, am form india, and yes, population is 1100 million+. but how did you know???

Michael Says:

Roger is behind Nadal by just about 700 points and it is definitely possible he can clinch the World No.2 position if he is able to win Miami too and Nadal falters in the early round.

pjc Says:

Last year Federer had a pretty awful clay court masters. He lost in the 3rd round (90 points), a semi finals (360points)and a quarter final (180 points). That’s only 630 points, if he wins one tournament he would surpass that by 370 points. Needless to say he can make up a ton of ground on Nadal and Djokovic. At the French Fed has a ton of points to defend but if he has a better clay court master series he can definitely make up for it, even if he fails to make the finals.

By the French Open Roger Federer should pass Nadal for #2 in the world, one mis step by Nadal and Fed can close rapidly! Maybe a Djokovic/Nadal Semi Final at the French. Lets HOPE!

van orten Says:

the draws will be out today …i dont care which side federer falls in…if he wants number 2 ranking then he has to earn it by winning again the whole thing beating the best …

Sean Randall Says:

Great, Federer wins Indian Wells and people are already computing how he can get back to No. 1!

Maybe Mirka or Gavin Rossdale can take out Novak and Rafa’s leg, Tayna Harding style. That would spare us the math and fandom.

van orten Says:

me talking about ranking number 2…and it s very very possible scenario

skeezerweezer Says:

^yeah cart before the horse, he has still a very long tough road to do it. This fan would much rather see him sneak out another slam or 2 before he is done. However, its been a great ride with Fed since USO, much appreciated. Never expected him to be beating the very best in the game so late in his career….monumental.

RZ Says:

Sean, if Fed got back to #1 for just 2 more weeks, many of us Fed fans (or at least this particular Fed fan) would shut up about how he could get there. :-)

Kimberly Says:

By the French Open Roger Federer should pass Nadal for #2 in the world, one mis step by Nadal and Fed can close rapidly! Maybe a Djokovic/Nadal Semi Final at the French. Lets HOPE!


I’ll take it. That will mean Novak won’t gain any points and Rafa can beat Tomas Berdych or Delpo in the final. After all, Jamie’s psychic has promised us Rafa is winning this one.

skeezerweezer Says:

“Skorocel Says:

Telling stat: Federer 4 BPs out of 6 (took the first 3, which is something very rare in his matches against the Spaniard)”

Skorocel I caught this on the other thread and forgot post about this.

I thought it was a very telling stat. Knowin you are a “jaded” Fed fan I know you would know these tidbits for of which the Fed man can be atrocious at.

It’s true, and if you noticed he was hitting out more on his returns. I had noticed during his slump years he had that chip return he would hit most of the time and his opponents were starting to eat up and dictate the point with. He has improved a lot over the last year or two in this dept. by hitting through his returns more. Think it has helped in his BP’s also…

Steve 27 Says:

Federer has to defeat many time Djokovic and Nadal if he can surpass Sampras’s record in major stages like grand slam, but you never know. and where is jamie, do not tell me she’s a fraud?

Ajet i think you mentioned in another post, you write about India before, Now I see why you are so sensitive to religion. how is life in India?

jane Says:

Nole did win Rome 2008. But, whatever. He is probably tumbling to number 3 by the sounds of it. Hope not! Also, it is not assured Fed will have a “straight path” to the final if Nole and Rafa are on the same side. What about Murray? Tsonga? Berdych? Two have beat Fed at a slam. What about Isner? He is a toughie and he has improved. (He had a high percentage of firsts in overall yday, but he hit only 4 aces to 20 the day before). He could be trouble, although now one wouldn’t run into him round one, like Rafa at the FO last year, so that helps. I am just pointing out, we never know. That said, the top 4 have been VERY reliable in big events this past year, and it is true Fed’s been on a roll. The switch to clay will be intriguing.

andrea Says:

crazy….if roger had made the USO final he would be #2 today. that match point saved by novak was unbelievable. that will go down as one of the best points played in a match for years.

clay season is still, historically speaking, rafa’s time but in the last 3 years inroads have been made so although he remains the favorite, he’s not a fore gone conclusion anymore, especially in the best of 3 events.

what if isner becomes a clay court monster and takes him out?

Danica Says:

Isner is kind of great clay player already. He took Nole to five sets in Belgrade (Davis Cup). He won over Federer in Switzerland (Davis Cup). And he took Rafa to five in last FO. He can be a true threat.

jane Says:

Danica, that’s right about Isner and clay- he’s beat Fed and he’s pushed Rafa and Nole in 5 setters. He was also in the final of Belgrade with Querrey I think. Isner could be a dark horse through the clay season… Strange to think it, as his game seems like it would suit fast surfaces best, but it seems true based on the evident. Wonder what it is about his game that translated well to clay?

tennisfan Says:

What an achievement it will be if Federer regains no.2 ranking once again! How many had even thought that this was possible at the end of the year 2011?

Federer’s effort since last Oct 2011 has been really inspiring to all the tennis fans! He does have a great shot to regain World No. 1 at the end of the year if he can sustain his current form.

Roger Federer: The Power of Belief !

mem Says:


in all due respect, you people are so naive!

it’s simple! word is the clay was sped up in 2009 when soderling beat nadal. i’m not discrediting his win, but things are not always what they seem. that is why a big server like him was able to hit aces on a clay surface that was originally designed to be slow and favor topspin, which makes it difficult for big servers to hit aces. as you see, that’s no longer the case.

also, people don’t discuss why isner was able to take nadal 5 sets last years, new balls that lessen nadal’s effectiveness on clay were used and are suited for big servers. no one is going to tell you that. maybe you guys need to take your heads out of the sand sometimes. there you have it!

Steve 27 Says:

Harcourts are slow but clay courts are fast. Is ironic, many people mentioned only about the first one all the time but about Madrid and Roland Garros and his sped balls, blue courts, its indoor conditions, almost nothing. why?

jane Says:

mem, you have a point about the balls at the FO last year. I remember a few players talking about that switch because they’d been using one ball type throughout all the clay masters and then it was switched for the slam, which doesn’t really make sense as those are, in a way, warm-up events and they were grooved playing with a particular ball. I think the concern amongst the players was about injury, if I recall correctly?

That said, I think your answer about Isner doesn’t take into account that he was also in a final at Belgrade on clay, went to five sets against Nole on clay in 2010 and now has beaten Fed and clay. These are all different that the FO, so I still maintain that something about his game seems to translate to clay generally.

Brando Says:

That is very true, and almost hypocritical that people do not speak about the changes on clay.

– Bar maybe MC- and possibly rome- the courts at madrid and RG are much faster than they traditionally were.

– As mem highlighted the courts at RG have been speeded up.

– New balls were also used at RG last year, which were very conducive for high bounce, speed of the court.

– The ridiculous change to blue of the surface at madrid.

Ultimately, this has led to the courts of madrid, IMHO, playing more like a traditional HC surface than either IW or Miami.

RG may also be at the same level of the AUS open.

Either way, whatever individual opinions maybe, there is a DOCTORING of surfaces going on know which has not helped in maintaining how surfaces used to traditionally behave.

There is VERY LITTLE difference now between AUS/ FO/ Wimby IMHO.

USO is different from the others, its more closer to what it traditionally is like, but even that is said to have slowed down recently.

mem Says:


i have no idea what belgrade’s clay is made of. i have been watching roland garros for years, so i can pretty much tell when there is a change. i know a little bit more about that surface.

all i’m saying is things are not always what they appear. tennis is not a competition anymore where players get rewarded for hard work, adaptation, and sacrifice. it’s about helping players who want something for nothing climb up on the backs of those who put in work. it has become all about making sure that a certain player doesn’t achieve but so much. it’s not the sport that i became a fan of years ago.

some people don’t care how their favorite players win, but i do. i want nadal to be measured by beating the best and overcoming challenges on his own merit. that’s what integrity in competition means to me.

personally, i don’t have respect this kind of stuff, but it is what it is.

Las Vegas Says:

I would like to think that Fed can retake number 1, but let’s look at step before getting to number 1: getting to number 2.

From my calculations, Nadal has to defend about 6500 points up to and including Wimbledon. Federer has to defend 2550 points.

Of the tournaments that Federer is scheduled to play through Wimbledon, there are 7250 at stake total.

There’s Miami, and then clay court season, and then Wimbledon. I know Nadal is king of clay, but you HAVE TO like Federer’s chances of AT LEAST getting to number 2 after Wimbledon. He only has to do a little better than last year on the clay courts, and Nadal only has to do the same or slightly worse.

I know Federer has to defend a lot of points at the French, but Nadal has to defend even more (2000 to 1200). And at Wimbledon, Nadal has A LOT more points to defend than Federer (1200 to 360).

Barring a complete collapse on the part of Fed, he certainly OUGHT TO be at least number 2 by the end of Wimbledon. If not, then I’ll be very disappointed.

Skorocel Says:

@skeezerweezer: To be honeest, I don’t know whether Fed did something different in that IW semi vs Nadal re: his returns (can’t remember how these BPs actually went in favor of the Swiss, maybe because they indeed almost all went his way, so therefore it’s somewhat tougher for a demanding fan like me to remember them as opposed to those which he missed, especially if it’s a painful miss – which I really hate, btw!), but all I know is that, in the first 3 opportunities, he didn’t falter even once. Whatever it was, he simply won these 3 points. It’s something you don’t see that often in these Fedal matches, but if it indeed occurs, Federer’s usually the winner (Madrid 2009, WTF 2010, 2011, IW 2012)…

Re: the returns, I still feel that he hasn’t quite mastered Nadal’s 2nd serve (I mentioned 2nd serve because it’s obviously easier to attack than the 1st). Whether it’s the nerves, Nadal on the other side of the court (probably both), he still gets tight more often than not when Nadal has to go through 2nd serve… And notice that Nadal, in 99 % of the cases, always tries to do something to surprise Fed. He rarely hits the 2nd serve to the same spot twice in a row – especially if it’s an important point. He often hits it to Fed’s FH (when everyone including Fed would’ve thought it’d go to his BH), and when he does it, Federer’s usually already on his way to run around his BH ;-), or he hits it to Fed’s body, and so on… It’s strange, because as “weak” as Nadal’s 2nd serve may look against the likes of Djoker or maybe Murray, it still somehow appears “better than ordinary” against Fed. Granted, Djoker may be the best returner in the game right now, and his returns in general are of a more aggressive nature than those of Fed, but still I think Fed could do better in this area.

I think it’s mostly mental – no secret there. Against Djoker, he’s perfectly aware that, unless his 1st serve pct isn’t at his usual 70 % + level (and even this is sometimes not enough), the Serb will punish him mercilessly with the return. After losing 7 straight matches to him, he knows it more than against anyone else… Look, for example, at that fateful game in 5th set of their AO final (at 4-2, Nadal serving) – he missed an unbelievably easy BH pass at 30-15, and once it was 30 all, Djoker immediately fired 2 fantastic returns (if I recall it correctly both were of Nadal’s 1st serve) as if it was the easiest thing to do in the world, and the match was over for the Spaniard…

But against Federer, Nadal knows he can, more often than not, go away with it… And this awareness of course translates into his self-belief and makes him all that more firm & assured when hitting these 2nd serves vs the Swiss – again no secret. He knows that against Djoker, his 2nd serves must be played with a certain amount of risk in order to not give the Serb a chance to attack with the return, whereas against Fed, it often doesn’t need to be that good – it just has to be CLEVER.

Michael Says:

Realistically I feel that Roger can be No.2, but No.1 is very far away. He needs to win either the Wimbledon or US Open to top it. Definitely possible but we have to wait may be till July or September latest to see what fructifies.

skeezerweezer Says:


Read your post thanks…to sum up my agreement with it….

“I think it’s mostly mental – no secret there”

Surely mental at this level……however mental confidence can be helped with some stroke strategy, which I have been astute to and very complaining about in Feds game ( the chip return ). Although when Fed came on the scene, the return game was a bash return, Fed returned a chip return ( remember matches against Roddick? haha ) and as long as he got it back deep he was good to go to start the rally. But the game changed, players got smart, and if Fed floated one back on the ROS, the guys would pummel it and dictate the point and have Fed running Rabbit style all over and lose (Fed)the point. Frustrating. Imo he has to hit out on his returns now, and use the chip for variety, not use the chip (or slice ) as the routine return. Guys like Rafa, Nole, Murray etc know how to eat that up. If you look at Djokers return ( the new consummate ) he never slices ( or hardly blocks ) his return, but gives it a full punch or complete stroke back to his opponent forcing them into a neutral response, NOT an offensive one. A very important start to a point……

In summary, Yes its mental fortitude to decide ( I gotta return with aggressiveness, while still being relaxed ) vs. “just get in play”. that is a loser attitude at this level….hoping your opponent will make a mistake….that is what I noticed wrt Feds returns this tourney as far as improvement ..

Saizal Ali Says:

Roger is gonna be the #1 player sooner or later as it is or hate you cannot debate roger is the greatest ever.
Rafa and Djoker sucks,both of you get out of roger’s way otherwise he will crush you like I crush a beer can.

rogerafa Says:

“Roger Federer Is Now No. 1 In ATP Rankings For 2012 Points”

I do not think this headline or this thread would have been created for any other player. Is this such a remarkable affair so early in the season? Novak won the most important thing so far in the season and is firmly entrenched as the number one player in the world. Rafa’s best part of the season is round the corner. Roger did well at IW but there is no need to make such a song and dance about it. The number one ranking is so far way from him at the moment that any talk about it right now appears ridiculous.

Danica Says:

re: Isner in the finals of Serbia Open. I was at that match. He had two match (championship) points on HIS serve against Sam and managed to lose! Unbelievable.

re: clay speed. I was reading somewhere that the clay in Switzerland for that Davis Cup tie was like sand, that’s how slow it was :)

Danica Says:

PS: It is also said that Wimbledon is made much slower than it used to be.

Alex Says:

If Roger, does make the finals in Miami, how early would Nadal have to lose for him to over take the number 2 spot? Last year Nadal made the finals.

Sienna Says:

Danica Says:
PS: It is also said that Wimbledon is made much slower than it used to be.

March 20th, 2012 at 7:18 pm

Yes we could have that discussion over again!

rick Says:

Alex Says:
If Roger, does make the finals in Miami, how early would Nadal have to lose for him to over take the number 2 spot? Last year Nadal made the finals.

ANS. Nadal would have to lose his first match

love roger Says:

roger became number 2 after he won the madrid masters on blue clay 2012!

Hewbernard Says:

Be realistic, men/women!!!!!!!!! Roger Federer has aged; he plays the very same game 10 years ago; nothing has changed. Don’t you think other players know how he plays and adopt ways to conquer him? He has lost to many, many players; he is just nowhere near the top. If Andy Murray players a bit better, he could overtake RF in ranking.

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