ROGER Federer says losing the year-end No. 1 tennis ranking for the first time in five years will not change his life.
Spain's Rafael Nadal has surged to the top of the rankings after an outstanding year in which he defended his Roland Garros title, won Wimbledon, the Olympics and five other titles.
Federer, who beat Feleciano Lopez 6-3 6-2 in Basel yesterday to reach the final of his home Swiss Indoors for the fifth time, has been laying the ground work for a 2009 resurgence.
"He's (Nadal) played consistently all season long, that's what this game is about," said the 13-time Grand Slam champion, who was scheduled to play David Nalbandian in the final overnight.
"His only missing goal might be winning the Masters Cup and he's even got the Davis Cup final to play."
Nadal becomes the 15th different year-end No. 1 after finishing runner-up to Federer for the past two years and holding the No. 2 spot for a record 160 consecutive weeks (since July 25, 2005).
Federer was No. 1 for a record 237 straight weeks from February 2, 2004 to August 17, 2008.
"I was a bit disappointed when I knew that I would lose it. But I gave a good fight for nearly five years," Federer said.
"I've never been preoccupied about defending No. 1. Losing it doesn't change my life."