'A year later Roger Federer was already No. 1', says former Top 20

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'A year later Roger Federer was already No. 1', says former Top 20

In the last hours the news has arrived of the postponement of one week of Roland Garros, which will start on May 30 in Paris. The complex health situation in France forced this decision to be taken, with the hope of being able to welcome at least part of the public as had happened in October last year.

However, the slight change from the second Grand Slam of the season risks having a significant impact on the busy tennis calendar. In fact, the time interval between the French Open and Wimbledon will be shortened from three to two weeks, a change that could affect the schedules of some players.

The first that comes to mind is undoubtedly Roger Federer, who had expressed his desire to play some tournaments on clay before the Championship. The 20-time Grand Slam champion is on the list of entries for the Madrid Masters 1000, scheduled for the first week of May, although this does not guarantee his effective presence in the Spanish capital.

Many wonder if Roger Federer will choose to play a very tough tournament like Roland Garros, which includes best-of-five matches. His last appearance in Paris dates back to 2019, when he reached the semifinals clearly yielding to his eternal rival Rafael Nadal.

In general, the former world number 1 has only visited Porte d'Auteuil once in the last five years and the impression is that this statistic will not improve in 2021. The 39-year-old Swiss will not put his physique at risk.

Former World No. 13 Andrei Pavel recently opined that 20-time Grand Slam winner Roger Federer's all-round game and incredible talent make him nearly incomparable. Speaking of that lone victory, the Romanian recalled how Federer was a relative unknown at the time.

Pavel comments on Roger Federer

"My only victory over Roger Federer was in Hamburg in 2000," Andrei Pavel said. "He was very young, 18 years old, and ranked 40th in the world. A year later he was already No. 1."

Having only played only one event this year, Roger Federer is expected to return to the tour at the Madrid Masters. The Swiss is on the official entry list of the tournament, which is scheduled to begin in early May. Federer had claimed after his Doha quaterfinal loss that he needed to train further before playing matches week-in and week-out. The Doha event was the 39-year-old's first in more than a year, given that he underwent two knee surgeries in 2020.