Roger Federer has got his sights firmly set on returning to world number one at the Rotterdam Open this week.
Since a 2016 season hampered by knee surgery, Federer has been rejuvenated and rediscovered his brilliant best – his decision to skip the Olympic Games and the US Open that year proving a masterstroke as he has won three of the last five grand slam titles, including back-to-back Australian Opens.
However, topping the rankings is one thing that has eluded him with Rafael Nadal the current incumbent after an equally impressive 2017.
Federer's win at Melbourne Park in January moved him to within 155 points of Nadal and, with the Spaniard not playing until Acapulco later this month, he could usurp his old adversary.
A semi-final place will be enough to see him climb to the summit, a feat that would see him end five-year wait and become the oldest world number one in history.
"To be back in Rotterdam is very exciting, to be able to play for world number one is beyond exciting, it's crazy that I have that opportunity," he told Digitale Expressie.
"Semis seems not too far away, but yet it's still a big step so I'm trying to prepare as well as I can, see what happens and go from there.
"I think it would be unbelievable for my team, maybe more so than for myself personally but a lot of guys have put in so much work so that I was able to stay motivated and keep going as I have.
Two time champion Roger Federer says he is happy to be playing in Rotterdam again after five years. "Potentially playing for the world number one ranking is beyond crazy". #abnamrowtt pic.twitter.com/fk2fawD9af— ABN AMRO WTT (@abnamrowtt) February 12, 2018
"To reward everyone with a world number one would be very special.
"Regardless if I make it or not it would look nice to be world number one again, but I'm not there yet, it's not going to be easy I know that, world number one has never been easy but I'm going to try and see what happens this week."
Federer's biggest challenge could come in the form of compatriot Stan Wawrinka in the quarter-finals, a test the Swiss number one is relishing.
"I would love to be in that position with anyone, but with Stan it would be like a grand slam final, a big-time match," Federer added.
"I didn't expect to win Australia, I played it not thinking about number one. I didn't think of the rankings at all in Melbourne.
"I am very motivated to be the number one again. I happy I'm here, healthy and eager to play."
|Ronaldo gunning for United, Aguero targets double record - Champions League in Opta numbers|
|Ill Vardy couldn´t stomach penalty decision – Puel|
|LeBron´s Lakers lose again, Magic stun Celtics|
|Bartomeu: No Barca return for Neymar, Valverde contracted until 2020|
|Simmons and ´stimulating´ 76ers in NBA Finals mix, says Longley|
|Falcons heap further misery on Giants|
|Vidic hails Ronaldo as ultimate professional ahead of Old Trafford return|
|Warriors´ Cousins nearing NBA return|
|Pogba can´t do the basics – Souness criticises Man United star|
|Messi absence big blow for Barca as Icardi talks up Inter|
|´You can´t cry, that´s true´ – Ronaldo responds to Isco|
|Bartomeu: Barca still competitive without Messi|
|Bills RB McCoy remains in concussion protocol|
|Raiders place Marshawn Lynch on IR|
|Emery calm over title talk after another Arsenal win|
|Green: Warriors have to clean up defensively|
|Mariners say Bolt talks ongoing amid reports contract offer was rejected|
|Proud captain Ozil revels in Arsenal´s ´sexy football´|
|Puel angry over Holding handball|
|Cilic breezes through in Basel, Anderson fights back|
|Ingram: Four-game ban better than we expected|
|Raiders send Cooper to Cowboys for first-round pick|
|Arsenal 3 Leicester City 1: Outstanding Ozil inspires comeback win|
|World Series 2018: Three reasons why the Dodgers will win|
|Yarmolenko out for six months after Achilles surgery|
|World Series 2018: Three reasons why the Red Sox will win|
|Ozil eclipses Klinsmann to become Premier League´s most prolific German|
|Allegri expecting Old Trafford battle against Mourinho´s United|
|Bertens feared she did not belong in Kerber clash|
|Returning Ronaldo expecting ´tough´ game against Manchester United|
|Cristiano Ronaldo confident of clearing his name amid rape allegation|
|Osaka looking to learn from losing start in Singapore|
|Kovac expects tough test against AEK Athens|
|Whyte gives Chisora deadline over rematch|
|Spartak Moscow sack Massimo Carrera|
|Atletico Madrid confirm fresh injury issue for Gimenez|
|Dolberg extends Ajax contract after Real Madrid links|
|Ronaldo an example for Lukaku to follow|
|Bertens battles back to blast past Kerber|
|Ramos apologises for training ground fracas|
|Raikkonen should take heed of Alonso misfortune as F1 career winds down|
|Guardiola wants Manchester City fans to push team to Champions League glory|
|Isco not interested in departed Ronaldo - he didn´t want to be here|
|World Series 2018: Three storylines to watch in Red Sox-Dodgers|
|Neymar focus bad for football - PSG´s Maxwell|
|Marco Ianni charged by FA over Jose Mourinho touchline row|
|Stephens sees off Osaka in see-saw Singapore battle|
|I´m happy at Manchester United - Mourinho dismisses Real Madrid reports|
|Semenya and Asher-Smith head IAAF Female World Athlete of the Year shortlist|
|Mandzukic to miss Manchester United trip|
|I turned down Manchester United to return to Juventus - Bonucci|
|Sanchez out of Manchester United´s clash with Juventus|
|Australia make Short work of run chase in T20 win|
|Brotherly g-love! Tommy Fury follows Tyson into the pros|
|Ozil´s international retirement can help Arsenal - Emery|
|If you sack Lopetegui, you have to sack us all – Isco|
|Lopetegui defiant amid Real Madrid sack reports|
|Sri Lanka spinner Herath to retire after Galle Test|
|Ronaldo returns for Old Trafford welcome amid disquieting noise|
|Garcia claims third Andalucia Valderrama Masters title|
|Ex-England international Waldrom retires|
|´Massive personality´ Hart can lift Burnley, says Kompany|
|Liverpool felt wrath of ´emotional´ Klopp, says Shaqiri|
|Reid: Jenkins capitalised on Kaepernick movement|
|Manchester United v Juventus: Ronaldo out to end dismal scoring record against Mourinho|
|Injured Ribery to miss Bayern´s clash with AEK|
|Wilshere would have stayed at Arsenal under Wenger|
|Mahomes stars again as Chiefs crush Bengals|
|Bolt must accept ´much less´ to join Mariners, says A-League chief|
|Klopp compares Liverpool to dog without favourite toy|