Roger Federer's reputation as one of the finest tennis players of all time was cemented on Monday, as the Swiss broke Pete Sampras' record for the most number of weeks at the top of the world rankings.
Federer returned to the No. 1 spot for the first time in over two years with a record-equaling seventh Wimbledon men's singles triumph, a victory which was also gave him an unparalleled 17th grand slam title.
The 30-year-old has now spent 287 weeks at the summit since turning pro in 1998, one more than 14-time grand slam winner Sampras managed between 1993 and 2000.
By comparison, Steffi Graf holds the women's record total of 377 weeks at No. 1, with Martina Navratilova second on 332.
"It is really an amazing feeling for me to have regained the No. 1 ranking," Federer said on the ATP Tour website.
"I had set a goal with my team to try to 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.
"I am extremely proud and honored to have beaten Pete's record as he was my childhood hero and I have always looked up to him."
Sampras, who retired in 2002, congratulated Federer on his achievement.
"Great effort. 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," the American said.
Behind Federer and Sampras on the list are eight-time grand slam winners Ivan Lendl (270 weeks) and Jimmy Connors (268 weeks) while John McEnroe, a winner of seven major titles, was at the top for 170 weeks.