Roger Federer is now certain to drop out of the World's Top 10 for the first time since 2017 and it could signal an end to his dominance.
The 20-time grand slam champion announced he would take the rest of season off after his Wimbledon campaign to nurse another injury.
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The 40-year-old provided fans with a telling update in September and admitted the "worst" is behind him but a return date to tennis is still not clear.
Taking time away from tennis comes with it the inevitable rankings drop, but Federer's lack of tournaments over the last two years will now see him slide even further.
However, following Hubert Hurkacz's win over Frances Tiafoe at Indian Wells, Federer will officially drop out of the Top 10 for the first time since 2017.
Hurkacz's win to knock Federer out of the Top 10 is ironic, considering Hurkaz was the last man to defeat the Swiss maestro back at Wimbledon.
Hubert Hurkacz easily beats Frances Tiafoe 6-3, 6-2 in 70 minutes to reach the last 16 in Indian Wells against Karatsev (lost to him 10 days ago in San Diego...).
Roger Federer will officially leave the top 10 after Indian Wells.
— José Morgado (@josemorgado) October 12, 2021
Roger Federer's ranking fall just the beginning
Federer's drop off in the rankings could just be the start.
The 40-year-old could drop as low as World No.17 after dropping 500 points at the Basel Open and a further 400 points after missing the ATP Finals series.
This will be his lowest ranking since 2001.
With the frozen rankings system being scaled back, Federer is set to lose a fair chunk of point over the next few weeks.
A number of players are right behind Federer and could overtake him comes year end.
Felix Auger-Aliassime, Jannick Sinner, Diego Schwartzmann and Denis Shapovalov are all close to overtaking Federer.
This is the fourth time in his illustrious career the Swiss maestro has been knocked out of the Top 10.
Federer dropped out twice way back in 2002 and once in 2016.
But at 40 years old and taking part in less tournaments as time goes on, one could suggest Federer might not enter the Top 10 again in his career.
Hurkacz, last man to beat Federer in Wimbledon, sent Roger out of the Top10 after beating Tiafoe.
Probably for the last time in Federer’s career. pic.twitter.com/ddeP87d79n
— enrico maria riva (@enricomariariva) October 12, 2021
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