Andy Murray's win at the Shanghai Masters confirms he is the man of the moment and marks a potentially decisive watershed as he overtakes Roger Federer in the rankings for the first time.
Victory in China over Spain's David Ferrer on Sunday was the third consecutive title triumph for the 24-year-old Scot after wins in Bangkok and Tokyo and he is on a 15-match winning streak after his triumphant Asian swing.
Britain's Murray has just Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal ahead of him in the rankings as he targets the year-end number three slot, something he has never before achieved. Federer, absent from Shanghai, will swap places with Murray, slipping to number four -- his lowest ranking in more than eight years.
The last time the Swiss great was ranked lower than number three was way back in June 2003, the month before he won his first Grand Slam at Wimbledon.
But Murray said it was too soon to write off his Swiss rival, against whom he holds an 8-6 career advantage.
"For a lot of years everything went very right for him. He's had a few tournaments this year where maybe things could have gone his way and they didn't. That's tough. But I'm sure next year he'll be competing. He's still playing great tennis," said Murray.