© Mike Frey/Shanghai Rolex Masters

When he needs a second serve, Roger Federer delivers more than any other player on the ATP World Tour.

Federer Leads The Way Serving Under Pressure

Infosys ATP Beyond The Numbers show how Federer has bucked the trend of donating double faults

How many second serves do you think you can make before a double fault eventually creeps in?

The benchmark may be a little lower than you think. Players in the Top 10 of the Emirates ATP Rankings average one double fault for approximately every 12 second serves they hit.

An Infosys ATP Beyond The Numbers analysis of Top 10 players since the beginning of the 2015 season identifies that double faults are on the rise, and that Roger Federer leads the pack in double faulting the least.

Top 10 Average: Double Faults / Second Serves

  • 2015 = One double fault / 13.4 second serves

  • 2016 = One double fault /11.4 second serves

  • 2017 to date = One double fault / 11.3 second serves

Federer is way above the Top 10 average of 11.3 in 2017, misfiring only once every 16.7 second serves. That’s slightly above his average since the beginning of the 2015 season, and a contributing factor to his resurgence back to No. 2 in the Emirates ATP Rankings.

Roger Federer: Average Double Faults / Second Serves

  • 2015 = 1 double fault / 15.0 second serves (125/1878)

  • 2016 = 1 double fault / 17.5 second serves (48/842)

  • 2017 = 1 double fault / 16.7 second serves (79/1317)

  • 2015 to 2017 average = 16.0 (252/4037)

2017 Top 10 Average: Doubles Faults / Second Serves Hit

Ranking

Player

Double Faults

Total Second Serves

Average

1

Rafael Nadal

108

1607

14.9

2

Roger Federer

79

1317

16.7

3

Andy Murray

98

1223

12.5

4

Alexander Zverev

226

1846

8.2

5

Marin Cilic

159

1648

10.4

6

Novak Djokovic

74

1017

13.7

7

Dominic Thiem

193

2120

11.0

8

Stan Wawrinka

83

1306

15.7

9

Grigor Dimitrov

208

1630

7.8

10

David Goffin

175

2166

12.4

-

Total / Average

1403

15880

11.3

Below are the Top 10 players during the past three seasons who committed the least amount of double faults per second serves hit, and their year-end Emirates ATP Ranking.

  • 2015 = No. 9 Richard Gasquet: 1 double fault / 16.5 second serves (106/1749)

  • 2016 = No. 4 Stan Wawrinka: 1 double fault / 14.5 second serves (158/2285)

  • 2017 to date = No. 2 Roger Federer: 1 double fault / 16.7 second serves (79/1317)

Reducing double faults comes down to a combination of factors, including having a simple toss and clean service motion, being able to successfully handle scoreboard pressure, and having experience in the bigger moments.

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While the current Top 10 average one double fault every 11.3 second serves hit, the leading 10 #NextGenATP players in the Emirates ATP Race To Milan are not that far behind.

They commit a double fault one of out every 9.7 second serves. The best performer is American Taylor Fritz, who is averaging one double fault every 13.4 second serves.

Fritz is currently in 10th position in the Emirates ATP Race To Milan, which will determine seven of the eight players who compete at the inaugural Next Gen ATP Finals, to be held 7-11 November in Milan.

#NextGenATP Analysis: Current Emirates ATP Race To Milan Standings

Race Place

Player

Double Faults

Total Second Serves

Average

1

Alexander Zverev

226

1846

8.2

2

Andrey Rublev

107

1050

9.8

3

Karen Khachanov

173

1763

10.2

4

Denis Shapovalov

70

505

7.2

5

Borna Coric

108

1334

12.4

6

Jared Donaldson

146

1519

10.4

7

Daniil Medvedev

165

1329

8.1

8

Hyeon Chung

104

992

9.5

9

Frances Tiafoe

66

737

11.2

10

Taylor Fritz

68

911

13.4

-

Total / Average

1233

11986

9.7

Develop Your Own Game

The #NextGenATP stars create a clean benchmark for players at all levels to copy. Go to the practice court and hit 10 consecutive second serves, alternating between the deuce court and ad court. One double out of those 10 is pacing right at the #NextGenATP average.

If you commit only one double fault out of every 16 second serves hit, then you know what it feels like to be Federer taking titles, of which he has collected five this season.

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