But victory against Robin Haase in the quarter-finals of the Rotterdam Open on Friday night saw Federer become the oldest number one ever at 36 years and 195 days to be precise.
He surpassed the mark set by Andre Agassi in the process and also overtook Serena Williams as the oldest no.1 in tennis history, male or female, in addition to ending his own five-and-a-half year absence from top spot. His return to the top spot will be formally rubber-stamped on Monday morning.
Federer first became world number one in 2004, when he beat Juan Carlos Ferrero in the semi-final of the Australian Open before going on to take the title. In between it was a battle, it was nerve-wracking getting back to number one.
"Times are great at the moment as a tennis player".
Given the form he's been showing in the last 14 months, most people aren't surprised that Roger Federer is once again world No. 1.More news: Winter Storm Warning: Plowable snow expected statewide
"It just shows if you have a staying power, and you have a pleasing style and you treat people right along the way, including the press, which I think is important, there's a lot to be learned from his journey", Clarey said while on The Tennis Podcast.
"I saved the best for the last", added Federer, who has a 12-0 record this season. What a week it's been, absolutely wonderful.
While most aren't surprised he's back at the top, Federer himself couldn't quite believe it.
Federer underwent knee surgery two years ago - an injury not acquired by the intensity of his chosen sport, but while bathing his children.
"The way he came back is a great accomplishment and I am happy for him as well as for Rafa previous year". I see him at a professional tournament and I am like ranked three in the world and I feel sorry for him.