If Fed doesn't defend Madrid what happens with the rankings? I don't really know how to calculate points and all. If Ferrer does well on clay and loses a couple of finals to Nadal, who sweeps the season, could the rankings be Djokovic, Murray, Nadal, Ferrer, Federer in that order? Any projections?

He may fall out of top 4 only if looses early at all four tourneys i.e. Madrid, rome, roland garros as well as wimbledon.

I dont know if it is even mathematical a possability for him to fall below Nadal. If it were to happen Nadal would have to win every clay event, and Federer lose early at all (which actually is easy to imagine happening this year). I do think by years end he will be no higher than #4 though.

4? Fed only played Madrid and Rome last yr - and only plans on playing both this yr. Did you reread? Title said 'by RG'.

Fed won Madrid and made the SF at Rome. That means he has to defend 1000 + 360 points. He currently has 8715. If he loses straight away in both (which is highly, highly unlikely) he will drop to about 7400 points. Nadal has 6745 points. He is defending Monte Carlo, Barcelona and Rome. In Madrid he made it to 3rd round last year. That means he'll have to win every tournament he won last year and Madrid to gain points. If he does he'll gain 900 points. So he'll have roughly 7600 points. So mathematically, unless I'm missing something, it is possible. But in reality, it is very unlikely to happen. Federer has to have his worst clay season and Nadal has to have his best ever.

There isn't any difference between 3rd and 4th seeding as far as the draw goes at RG, right? They draw for which of those seeds gets the top half and which goes into the bottom half. So no difference. 4 vs. 5 is the big difference. What would have to happen for Nadal to drop to 5?

Points from Miami haven't been substracted. Fed loses 45 points but Nadal was defending 360 points. So it means Nadal can only get to 7300 by RG. Federer is safe before RG and will probably stay ahead of Nadal until Wimbledon.

Ahh, yes forgot about that. Well yeah, instead of it being highly unlikely it is in fact impossible for Fed to be #4 for RG. 3rd and 4th seed are always on opposite sides of the draw. They can't be in the same half. It's split either 1 & 3 in top half or 1 & 4 in top half, but you never see 3 & 4 in the same half. So there is a big difference in terms of the draw.

Even if Nadal wins everything (including Madrid), Ferrer can gain big enough to stay ahead of Nadal- Ferrer is defending: Monte Carlo 2nd Round. Barcelona Final. Rome Semi-final. Madrid Quarter-final. Nadal is defending: Monte Carlo Title. Barcelona Title. Rome Title. Madrid 3rd Round. If Ferrer makes the Monte Carlo Final, makes it very hard for Nadal to finish ahead of Ferrer. Ferrer is in good enough form right now to make the SF or Final of Monte Carlo and SF of Madrid.

RG and Wimbledon is when Fed's ranking could really drop. 2720 points to defend in those two tournaments.

There is this underlying implication that Federer won't be doing well at Madrid, Rome and RG. This break he is currently having could be very beneficial. He's proven countless people (including me) wrong on numerous occasions.

Yeah, that's what I mean. If Nadal is 3 and Fed 4, or Fed 3 and Nadal 4 it doesn't make any difference because they'd be on opposite sides of the draw and which side they end up on will be determined randomly. So in either case they'd both have 50/50 chance of ending up in Djoker or Andy's half. Is it possible for Nadal to drop to 5? That's the question.

Nadal drops to #5 tomorrow. As stated above, if Ferrer improves his Euroclay results he may stay ahead of Nadal because Madrid is the only tourney in which Nadal can gain points.

Nadal is going to be #5 unless Ferrer has a terrible clay season and Nadal wins all the titles he won last year, plus wins Madrid. He's never done that before, so I wouldn't think that he'd do it this time either...

3rd and 4th seed are always on opposite sides of the draw, so how can there be no difference? For example, one can be seeded #3 and in the same half as #1. That means the #4 seed will be in the opposite half along with #2. So yes there is a big difference, If Fed is #3 he could be in the same half as Djoker, if he is seeded #4 he could be with Murray. So yeah, DropShitArtist maths just like English, is definitely not your strong point either...

you and math don't mix.... he can be 3 and play with djoker as well as he can be 4 and play with djoker..there is completely no difference between 3 and 4...both have same chance to play with number 1.

Gosh you people are so lacking in comprehension around here. I used the #1 and #3 scenario AS AN EXAMPLE. I clearly showed that #3 and #4 will be on different halves of the draw so there is a big difference. So, yes while they have the same chance of being put against #1, the fact still remains that IF #3 goes with #1 it makes a big difference than if #3 goes with #2.

LOL, give it up while you're ahead. I was wrong, math doesn't seem to be the problem (at least not in this case), it's basic logic.

If he's healthy, I think Federer will be much more focused come May than what we saw in Dubai and IW. Minus the Aussie Open, May - September is essentially his season now. This is why he plays. Madrid and Rome are important tune-ups to prepare for the French, and they're all important to stay sharp for his best shot on the grass of Wimbledon. I think he was really struggling with his focus in the last two tournaments.

No, I don't think so. Corners' statement, "There isn't any difference between 3rd and 4th seeding as far as the draw goes... " makes perfect sense. Your attempt to refute his statement does not make sense -- it appears to be a logic fail.

Yeah this is a worry for Fed, he's got a load of points to defend up to RG and Madrid is bound to be slower this year, looks like Murray might have some dangerous quarter and semi opponents at RG!