A day after losing to Alexander Zverev in the final of the Montreal Masters, Roger Federer announced that he will not be in a condition to compete at the 2017 Cincinnati Masters. WS Open, on its website, confirmed Federer's withdrawal on Monday. "I am very sorry to pull out of the Western & Southern Open as I always enjoy playing here," Federer said. "Cincinnati has some of the best fans in the world and I am sorry I will miss them. Unfortunately, I tweaked my back in Montreal and I need to rest this week," he said. Federer's range of motion didn't seem to be the same during his serves against Zverev.

The Swiss Maestro will no doubt be resting in preparation for the 2017 US Open now.

Exodus of top players continues

Federer joins a parade of top-ranked players that simply aren't able to compete at this point in their careers. No less than 83.3% of the top six players in the world are currently on leave with injury problems. Federer joins Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic, Marin Cilic, and Stan Wawrinka as high-ranked players currently on the mend. For some of those players their injuries are long term but there is no word on Federer missing more than just Cincinnati at this point. The US Open will start in two weeks, so he will be looking at being ready for that event from New York.

Nadal to claim top spot on August 21st

The development means that Rafael Nadal, the only player in the top six that is not currently injured (knock on wood), will claim the No. 1 ranking this time next week for certain. Murray will fail to defend 600 ranking points from making the Cincinnati final last season and now Federer won't be gain on Nadal due to non-participation.

That means that even if Nadal withdrew from Cincinnati or fell in the second round (he has a first-round bye) then he would still supplant Murray at the top of the rankings on August 21st. With Federer and Murray both out of the 2017 Western & Southern Open the results from Cincinnati are not relevant to who will be top ranked this time next week.

When it comes to the Cincinnati draw Federer has been replaced by a lucky loser in Thomas Fabbiano of Italy. The term "lucky loser" in tennis refers to the highest-ranked player that falls in the final round of qualifying but gets entry to the main draw still due to someone pulling out. In Fabbiano's case you could call him a very lucky loser. Not only does he get entry into the draw, but he inherits Federer's first-round bye. Fabbiano will in effect have the perspective in Cincinnati of a two seed. That's a better position than the players that won their way into the tournament as qualifiers so truly Federer's withdrawal was a stroke of luck for the Italian.