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Happy Birthday, Roger! 39 stats for Federer’s 39th birthday
From holding all kinds of Grand Slam records to becoming the first tennis player to top Forbes’ list of highest-paid athletes, here are 39 things to know about the living legend.
Published Aug 09, 2020
Roger Federer may not be rejoining the tour anytime soon—in June he announced he’d undergone a “quick arthroscopic procedure” on his right knee, and that he wouldn’t be returning to action until 2021—but today is nonetheless a very special day for the tennis legend, as he celebrates his 39th birthday.
So we thought we’d celebrate, too. Here are 39 standout stats for the now-39-year-old Swiss:
AT THE MAJORS
His 20 Grand Slam titles are the men’s all-time record. Broken down by major, that’s six Australian Opens, one French Open, eight Wimbledons and five US Opens.
His eight Wimbledon titles are also a men’s all-time record. Federer conquered the All England Club five straight years from 2003 to 2007, and has won three more titles, in 2009, 2012 and 2017.
He’s the only man in tennis history to win three different majors five times each. Three women have achieved the feat: Margaret Court, Steffi Graf and Serena Williams.
He’s the only player in the Open Era, male or female, with 100 match wins at two different majors. The Swiss has 101 career match wins at Wimbledon, and 102 at the Australian Open.
He’s 20-11 in Grand Slam finals. Broken down by major, that’s 6-1 in Australian Open finals, 1-4 in French Open finals, 8-4 in Wimbledon finals and 5-2 in US Open finals.
His 31 Grand Slam finals are the most in men’s tennis history. Federer’s two closest rivals are next on the list: Rafael Nadal has 27 (19-8) and Novak Djokovic has 26 (17-9).
He’s one of eight men in tennis history to complete the Career Slam. By winning the 2009 French Open, Federer became the sixth man to achieve the feat after Fred Perry, Don Budge, Rod Laver, Roy Emerson and Andre Agassi. Nadal and Djokovic have since joined him on the list.
He’s played more Grand Slams tournaments than any other man in the Open Era. The 2020 Australian Open was the 79th major he’s played. Only one woman has played more—Venus Williams with 85.
He’s won one of every four Grand Slam tournaments he’s played. Federer’s 20 titles in 79 majors played is approximately a 25.3% win rate.
He’s the second-oldest player, male or female, to win a Grand Slam title in the Open Era. Federer won his most recent major, the 2018 Australian Open, at 36 years and 173 days. Ken Rosewall won his last major, the 1972 Australian Open, at 37 years and 62 days.
He holds the men’s all-time record for most consecutive major finals. He reached 10 straight major finals from 2005 Wimbledon to the 2007 US Open—and after his streak was snapped by Djokovic in the semifinals of the 2008 Australian Open, he reached another eight straight major finals from the 2008 French Open to the 2010 Australian Open. That's an incredible 18 finals in 19 majors.
He also holds the men’s all-time record for most consecutive major semifinals. The Swiss reached 23 straight between 2004 Wimbledon and the 2010 Australian Open.
As if that weren’t enough, he has the longest streak of consecutive major quarterfinals, too. He made 36 straight, from 2004 Wimbledon to the 2013 French Open.
IN THE RANKINGS
He holds the record for most career weeks at No. 1 on the ATP rankings. Federer has spent a total of 310 career weeks there. Pete Sampras is currently in second place with 286 weeks.
He has the longest consecutive streak at No. 1, male or female. After first rising to No. 1 on February 2, 2004, Federer spent 237 straight weeks there, until August 17, 2008. The next-longest streak at No. 1 on the ATP or WTA rankings is a tie—Graf and Serena both had 186-week runs.
He’s the oldest player to be ranked No. 1, male or female. Federer was 36 years old when he last held the top spot in 2018, just beating out Serena, who was 35 when she last held it in 2017.
He’s been the ATP’s year-end No. 1 five times. He finished 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2009 at the top spot, tying him with Jimmy Connors, Nadal and Djokovic for second-most year-end No. 1 finishes in ATP rankings history. Sampras holds the record with six—and they were all consecutive.
He’s finished 15 of the last 17 years in the Top 3. From 2003 to 2019, the only two years he didn’t finish a season in the Top 3 were 2013, when he was No. 6, and 2016, when he ended his season after Wimbledon due to a knee injury and dropped to No. 16 by the year-end rankings.
He’s currently the oldest player in the Top 100—and he’s No. 4. He’s also the second-oldest player in the Top 500 after a 41-year-old Ivo Karlovic, who’s currently ranked No. 124.
AND MUCH, MUCH MORE
He has the second-most career titles in ATP history. Federer won four ATP titles in 2019 to bring his career haul to 103, trailing only Connors, who amassed 109 in his career.
He’s won the ATP Finals six times—a tournament record. He conquered the year-end event in 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2010 and 2011. Ivan Lendl, Sampras and Djokovic are next with five wins apiece.
He’s won the third-most ATP Masters 1000 titles. His triumph in Miami last year was his 28th Masters 1000 crown. He trails only Nadal and Djokovic, who have 35 and 34, respectively.
He’s won more ATP 500-level titles than anyone else. The Swiss has captured 24 of them in his career. Nadal and Djokovic have the next-most in that category, with 21 and 14, respectively.
He’s one of only three players to surpass $100 million in career prize money. Djokovic leads the list with $143,631,560, then Federer with $129,946,683, then Nadal with $120,955,904. (Nice consolation prizes.)
He’s one of only two men in the Open Era to win the same ATP event 10 or more times. Federer has won both Halle and Basel 10 times; Nadal has hit double digits at three events, winning Monte Carlo and Barcelona 11 times each, and the French Open 12 times.
He’s reached the final of Basel 15 times. It’s an Open Era record for most finals at any ATP event.
He’s won eight ATP doubles titles, too. Points-wise, Federer’s biggest doubles triumph came alongside Max Mirnyi at the Masters 1000 event in Miami in 2003, a few months before he won his first Grand Slam title at Wimbledon. But in terms of sentimental value, another one may take the cake…
He’s an Olympic gold medalist in doubles. Federer captured the gold medal in doubles at the Beijing Olympics in 2008 with good friend and fellow Swiss Stan Wawrinka.
He’s also an Olympic silver medalist in singles. He nearly won a medal as a teenager at the Sydney Olympics in 2000—he lost to Tommy Haas in the semifinals, then to Arnaud Di Pasquale in the bronze-medal match—but Federer ended up getting his first medal in singles at the London Olympics in 2012, battling through to the final before falling to Britain's own Andy Murray.
He’s creeping up on Connors for most ATP match wins in the Open Era. He currently has 1,242 career wins at tour-level, just 32 shy of the American’s record of 1,274.
He’s creeping up on the all-time aces record, too. He's hit 11,344 aces in his career, trailing only Karlovic and John Isner, who have 13,599 and 12,237. The ATP started keeping the stat in 1991.
He’s a Davis Cup champion. Federer beat Richard Gasquet in the fourth rubber of the 2014 final, 6-4, 6-2, 6-2, to build an insurmountable 3-1 lead over France and thus clinch the title.
He’s a three-time Hopman Cup champion, too. He won the dual-gender title with Martina Hingis in 2001, and with Belinda Bencic in 2018 and 2019. No other man or woman has won the exhibition event three times.
He’s played Nadal 40 times—and he’s been closing the gap in their head-to-head. Nadal led Federer at this time six years ago, 23-10, but Federer’s gone 6-1 since then to cut that lead to 24-16.
He’s played Djokovic 50 times, but the Serb has been pulling away. At this time five years ago they were 20-20 in their head-to-head, but the Serb has gone 7-3 since then to pull ahead, 27-23.
He’s the only member of the Big 3 to win a Grand Slam title as a junior. The Swiss won the Wimbledon boys’ title in 1998, then went on to win his first men’s Grand Slam title as a 21-year-old at the All England Club in 2003. Nadal and Djokovic may not have won majors in the juniors, but they won their first men’s Grand Slam titles at a younger age: Nadal at 19, Djokovic at 20.
He’s the first tennis player in history to top the annual Forbes list of highest-paid athletes. He did it in 2020, just edging soccer megastars Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
He’s the most decorated athlete in Laureus history. He’s won six Laureus World Sports Awards: Sportsman of the Year in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2018, and Comeback of the Year in 2018.
He’s played for the two largest crowds in tennis history. He played Alexander Zverev in front of 42,517 fans in Mexico City in November 2019, then beat that a few months later when he played Nadal in front 51,954 fans in Cape Town, South Africa in February 2020. Both matches were exhibitions.