Despite his upset semi-final loss to David Goffin in the ATP World Tour Finals, Roger Federer is upbeat about an exciting 2018.
The Swiss ace has had a remarkable year after returning from an injury lay-off to win his first Grand Slam since 2012 at the Australian Open earlier this year.
Federer followed it up with six more titles, including a record-breaking eighth Wimbledon crown, as he is currently number two in the ATP tennis rankings, only behind Rafael Nadal.
While the 36-year-old could have closed the gap further on the Spaniard by winning the ATP Finals, Federer is not getting too fussed as he is already looking forward to the new year.
Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka are all expected to feature in the 2018 Australian Open after an injury-ridden 2017, while other stars such as Kei Nishikori, Tomas Berdych and Milos Raonic are also gearing up for a comeback.
In their absence, many youngsters such as Alexander Zverev, Dominic Thiem and Grigor Dimitrov have climbed up in the rankings and Federer believes a mix of the returnees and future stars makes for an "epic" start to the new year.
"I hope also Kei (Nishikori), Tomas (Berdych) and Milos (Raonic) all find their way back on tour and prefer to be in Australia because that would make it quite epic, a comeback for all the guys," Federer said, as quoted on Express.
"Then you mix them together with the new guys from the World Tour Finals here who have just come off a great year, obviously are confident, want to stay in the top 10, want to make the World Tour Finals again.
"They are sort of weaving their way in. Not so fast, guys, we also want to make it. You have the young guys coming through. It could be a very cool start to the year, which I'm really looking forward to."
As for Goffin, the Belgian will face Dimitrov in the ATP Finals on Sunday (19 November) to determine the winner of the season-ending event, with the latter already confirmed to end 2017 as the world number three after enjoying a season turnaround.