The good news is that Roger will keep the number 2 next monday (now 415 weeks in the top-2) and that now Murray needs to win Miami to take it from him after Miami.
And if Murray doesn't win Miami, he will probably need to play the final in Monte-Carlo or play great in MonteCarlo+Barcelona (he's not even entered them yet) to take the number 2 seed in Madrid and Roma (it's better for Roger to be number2-seed to avoid Djokovic in semis and rather have Ferrer or another player -if it's not Nadal
Like in Estoril 2010? How good is a loss in a small tournament for the old confidence? He doesn't need to scurry off to a small tournament like some journeyman trying to amass enough points to avoid having to play qualies. What he wants
is time off. It was decided before the back issue came up.
In other words...
he said himself that he will reconsider his schedule again : we just mention possibilities in that case, that's all
Points may be useful for him to keep a top-4 seed for the US Open, which is in real danger now. You may not like anybody to say it but that's the truth
Now if he decides not to play before Madrid as he had planned, it's perfectly OK for me and probably for most people who just "think of possibilities"
IF his back is completely fine I could see him playing in Monte Carlo. That tournament starts April 13, nearly a month away. If not, playing Estoril would be good. I almost feel like he needs a small tournament win like that to get his confidence back up.
Personally, I'm just concerned about starting on clay straight in a hard draw in Madrid Masters 1000 and I think having played one tournament before might be a good preparation. I still remember when he bumped into Gulbis in first round having no preparation in Roma 2010.
And I also think about points as I said.
I don't think about "confidence" here.
But I'm perfectly OK to leave him decide alone
And I don't think he would lose in a small tournament if he played it
On the other hand, I really don't think the last 3 tournaments have been as bad as many people make out. The back compromised his form in IW but before that he played great tennis. In Dubai he looked good and was one point away from final. .
I agree with that : he played very good tennis against Davydenko in Dubai and against IStomin in Indian Wells. And before tweaking something on his back, he was hitting the ball very well against Dodig even though he made errors seemingly by too much confidence.
And then he tweaked his back ... (and he bumped in a great Nadal)
My only regret is losing so stupidly to Berdych in Dubai : he had everything to win that match in 2 sets (I don't even think of the tie-break : he should have won it before, the way he lost his serve in the second set was crazy and he had tuns of opportunities to break Berdych ; in the tie-break Berdych gave him some points as well) and in that match, he played really crazily, whereas he was in a very good form. I even think he could have defeated Djokovic ... which in that case would have been good for his "confidence"
As he said, Rotterdam was disappointing but maybe good in the long run if he was to run into Delpo in the final and lose.
Considering their respective form in that tournament, Del Po would have probably defeated Fed but I don't think Fed's confidence would have been more hurt by that than by losing to Benneteau, quite the opposite.
He knows he can beat Del Po anyway : the H2H is 13-4, and most of these wins were in recent years, it's not at all like against Berdych with whom it's been 4-5 since the Australian open 2009 (included), nearly all of the matches being very tight.
Del Po is a very good match-up for Roger, honestly Del Po didn't even play well to defeat Murray and only Djokovic is a worse match-up for Del Po than Roger imo.