Roger Federer: Reducing 2013 Schedule Will Pay Dividends for Fed-Ex

Ian HanfordFeatured ColumnistDecember 19, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 12:  Roger Federer of Switzerland returns a shot during his men's singles final match against Novak Djokovic of Serbia during day eight of the ATP World Tour Finals at O2 Arena on November 12, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Julian Finney/Getty Images

Roger Federer isn't getting any younger, and he has nothing left to prove.

Playing a full schedule in 2013 would be possible, but there's no reason for the all-world tennis talent to risk his health for the Grand Slam tournaments.

As the 2013 ATP season approaches, it's time to look ahead. Federer's 2013 schedule is sleek and compact, but it seems like just the right length. He's missing one major tournament, but he still packs a lot of punch between January's Australian Open and October's BNP Masters.

For Federer, it's about quality not quantity at this point. Choosing his tournaments wisely is important at this point, and you can see here that he did just that.

Obviously, Federer's ranking could suffer because of his lighter schedule, but that doesn't matter anymore. He already holds the record for most-consecutive weeks at No. 1, making his standing from here on out a moot point.

Grand Slams are the only thing that matters anymore. Making sure that he's full strength for the year's biggest events is what's important, not maintaining the top spot in the ATP polls.

Plus, it's not like Federer is going to fall off the face of the Earth. Rafael Nadal, assuming that he's healthy, will command a top three spot, along with Novak Djokovic and possibly Andy Murray, but it's hard to see Federer falling below fourth. Even with less tournaments on the docket for next year, he will still be considered a top-five player in the world.

Federer isn't going to be around forever even though it seems like he could be at times. Cutting down on the events that he participates in will ensure that he's ready to go when it really matters, and that will make tennis fans happy as well because he will be there for the year's biggest matches.

No one is going to look down on Federer for falling from the No. 1 ranking because of what he's accomplished.

Adding another Grand Slam or two to his career resume is the larger priority, and Federer's fresh legs will be able to make that happen.