Roger Federer will make Laver Cup call at last minute, retirement announcement, reaction

Roger Federer will make Laver Cup call at last minute, retirement announcement, reaction

Roger Federer is still not a certain starter for the Laver Cup, despite making the announcement the tournament would be his last before retirement.

The 41-year-old Swiss maestro surprised the world when he announced he was pulling the plug on his career after his recent injury dramas have left him sidelined.

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While no longer the most successful grand slam winner in history, the Swiss maestro won 20 major titles in his career and is widely regarded as one of the greatest players of all-time.

In recent years, the hard work has caught up with him as he has broken down with several starts and stops in recent seasons as knee injuries take their toll.

In July at Wimbledon, Federer revealed he hoped to go out with one more trip to the All-England Club, but a month later announced he would undergo yet another knee surgery which would see him sidelined “for many months”.

He was named for the Laver Cup however, along with Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray as well as Stefanos Tsitsipas and Casper Ruud for Team Europe at the event, while Matteo Berrettini is an alternate if Federer is ruled out.

Federer’s fitness coach Pierre Paganini revealed the legendary star is still racing the clock to be ready to play at his final tournament.

“He will probably decide (if he’ll play) at the last moment,” Paganini told Blick.

“He’s trained to have as much information as possible about whether it’s a good idea or not. I am excited.”

Federer’s coach Severin Luthi admitted Federer was hoping to play a singles match or a doubles match at the event.

“It’s not definitive yet but he trained hard last week and is training again this week,” Luthi also told Blick.

“His aim is to play something – whether it’s singles or doubles we’ll have to see, but his aim is still to play at the Laver Cup – definitely. We have three hours in the morning. Trained and in the afternoon another two hours of training, I want to do my job well there.”

Paganini said the retirement wasn’t surprising and revealed Federer had been considering calling the end of his career since July.

“It’s about a person and the very personal decision not to play professional tennis anymore,” Paganini said regarding whether he advised Federer to consider retirement.

: We trainers are companions, lived with him, had everyday conversations, gave feedback. But of course, at some point you felt the direction it was going.

“That was an emotional moment. It is discussed soberly. But at the same time you can feel with every fibre that it is an incredibly emotional topic. It’s a decision that a player doesn’t make ten times in their life, but exactly once.

“That’s where the emotions come in, and you can feel that there’s a human being behind the tennis player. Roger has deep emotions and he can show them. That is beautiful.”

The tennis world quickly paid tribute to Federer when he announced his exit from the sport, including his greatest rivals in Nadal and Djokovic.

“I wish this day would have never come,” Nadal tweeted.

“It’s a sad day for me personally and for sports around the world. It’s been a pleasure but also an honour and privilege to share all these years with you, living so many amazing moments on and off the court.

Djokovic added: “Your career has set the tone for what it means to achieve excellence and lead with integrity and poise.

“It’s an honour to know you on and off court, and for many more years to come.”

Federer won the last of his Slam titles at the 2018 Australian Open and last played in a major final at Wimbledon three years ago, losing to Djokovic despite holding two championship points.

With AFP

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