Alexander Zverev has hit out at the ATP rankings, questioning why 20-time grand slam winner Roger Federer remains above him in the rankings despite sitting out for over a year due to injury.
In the recently released rankings, Zverev climbed to seventh while Federer dropped ever so slightly to sixth - but the German player was clearly unimpressed with his status after a consistent 2020 season.
'SORRY TO HEAR': Tennis fans gutted over 'sad' Kim Clijsters news
'TASTELESS JOB': Benoit Paire tees off on 'boring' ATP Tour rules
Zverev made the US Open final and the Australian Open quarter finals, as well as winning ATP 250 events in Germany and a Masters 1000 tournament in Paris in a steady campaign over the last 12 months.
Despite this, the 23-year-old remained behind Federer, who recently made a short-lived injury comeback, playing for the first time since last year's Australian Open.
A frustrated Zverev said the situation, caused by the ATP's freeze on rankings in 2020 due to the coronavirus, was disappointing.
“The ranking doesn’t really matter to me and with the system we have now, I should be top four, top five in the world in the normal system, but the system we have now is a bit absurd,” Zverev said.
“I am the biggest Roger Federer fan but he has not played for a year and he is higher ranked than me. I played a grand slam final, a Masters 1000 final. The system is just a disaster.”
Federer lost to world No.42 Nikoloz Basilashvili in the second round of the Qatar Open last week, before electing to withdraw from the subsequent Dubai Open.
The 39-year-old has already stated he won't play at the Miami Masters, meaning he's unlikely to play in tournament again until the European clay swing.
Federer conqueror Basilashvili wins Qatar Open
Nikoloz Basilashvili has capped a remarkable return to form by lifting the Qatar Open trophy.
The Georgian arrived in Doha having lost 14 of the 16 matches he had played since the tour resumed last summer, with his only victories coming against opponents ranked outside the top 250.
His poor form coincided with him being charged in his native country with domestic violence against his ex-wife, and the legal process remains ongoing.
But the world number 42 has found the winning formula again on court this week, culminating with a 7-6 (7-5) 6-2 victory over fifth seed Roberto Bautista Agut on Saturday.
Basilashvili's remarkable comeback started with his first-round victory over Australian John Millman, with his stand-out win, of course, coming in the quarter-finals when he ended Roger Federer's comeback event.
Asked on court whether he imagined at the beginning of the week he would end it with the trophy, Basilashvili said: "Definitely not. I'm super, super happy. I had zero expectations for sure to win the tournament."
Click here to sign up to our newsletter for all the latest and breaking stories from Australia and around the world.