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Federer breaks Sampras record as number one

Wimbledon champion Roger Federer has overtaken Pete Sampras’s record for the most number of weeks as world number one. The Swiss maestro’s win in the Wimbledon final restored him to the top position at a time when his career had seemed in decline. Now he has broken a record that had seemed unassailable, with 287 weeks in the number one spot.

"It is really an amazing feeling for me to have regained the No1 ranking," Federer said. "I had set a goal with my team to try and get back to the top of the rankings, but I never thought with the depth in the game this year that I would have been able to get it back so quickly."

Federer beat the previous number one Novak Djokovic at Wimbledon, and benefited from Rafael Nadal’s surprise defeat in the second round. Federer has always admired Sampras, so overtaking his record meant a great deal. "I am extremely proud and honoured to have beaten Pete's record as he was my childhood hero and I have always looked up to him."

Federer’s Wimbledon title, where he defeated Andy Murray in four sets in the final, also equalled Sampras’s total of seven wins at the All England club. Sampras himself paid tribute to Federer’s achievement in defying his age and clawing his way back to the top. "Great effort," the American said. "The hardest thing to do in sports is the ability to stay on top. Roger has been able to do so by great play and durability."

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