Roger Federer had entered the Top 20 for the second time in April 2001 and he never left that group after overcoming a tough period at the end of 2016 when he was unable to compete due to a left knee injury that sidelined him from the court since Wimbledon.
The young Swiss needed a year to make another step and he had found himself in the Top 10 for the first time in May next year after conquering his maiden Masters 1000 title in Hamburg. Between October 2002 and November 2016, Roger had spent 734 consecutive weeks in the Top 10, standing second on the Open era list behind Jimmy Connors who had one extra year in the elite group before he left it at the age of 36 in 1988 after almost 790 consecutive weeks! After dropping out from the Top 10 for 12 weeks at the end of 2016, Roger returned in glory after winning the Australian Open next January, making the Top 10 again and staying on that list ever since to pass the magic number of 800 weeks in this group as the second player after Jimmy Connors.
2018 was another stellar season for the great Swiss, becoming the oldest world number 1 and lifting his 20th Grand Slam title in Melbourne to extend his greatness and earn more ranking records that will hardly be matched in the future.
Ranked inside the Top 3 since July 2017, Roger has been among the best players in the world during the entire 2018 and he added more fuel to his ranking charts after another year in the Top 10, securing his 16th year-end Top 10 finish to join Jimmy Connors and Andre Agassi as the only player who has achieved that since the start of the ranking in 1973! Connors was there to finish the first season with the official ATP ranking in the elite group and he stayed there for 16 consecutive years, clinching the year-end Top 10 position between 1973-1988! Without that injury in 2016, Federer could have been on 17 but the only player who could pass Connors now is Rafael Nadal who has finished inside the Top 10 for the 14th straight year.
Andre Agassi is another veteran who had managed to play on a high level both as the teenager and after turning 30, missing only two Top 10 finishes between 1988 and 2005 (1993 after a right wrist injury and in 1997 when his career hit the rock bottom) and staying on 16 seasons in the elite just like Roger and Jimmy.
If he secures another season in the special group in 2019, Roger Federer will smash another ranking record as the only player with 17 year-end Top 10 finishes, looking good to enter the record books once again. The list of players with the most year-end Top 10 finishes since the start of the ATP ranking in 1973:
16 - Roger Federer (2002-2015, 2017-2018)
16 - Andre Agassi (1988-1992, 1994-1996, 1998-2005)
16 - Jimmy Connors (1973-1988)
14 - Rafael Nadal (2005-2018)