LONDON // Roger Federer slipped down one place to world No 3 today, the first time the Swiss great has been ranked outside the top two since November 2003. Federer, winner of a record 16 grand slams, suffered a shock quarter-final defeat to Czech Tomas Berdych at Wimbledon, won for the second time yesterday by world No 1 Rafael Nadal. Federer also lost at the same stage of the French Open in June, breaking a record sequence of 23 consecutive semi-final or better appearances in grand slams going back to Roland Garros in 2004. The Serb Novak Djokovic, who reached the semi-finals at Wimbledon, is now world No 2.
Federer was last at three in the world on November 10 2003, since which time he has notched up 15 grand slam titles after opening his account at Wimbledon that year. The 28-year-old first reached world No 1 on February 2 2004, holding the position until August 2008 when Nadal climbed to the top. Federer then reclaimed the top slot the following July after winning Wimbledon for the sixth time, but saw Nadal again oust him as world No 1 in June this year.
The American Pete Sampras holds the record for time spent at No 1 with 286 weeks, just one more than Federer. * Reuters