Roger Federer is the greatest sporting icon of his generation and, like Michael Jordan, Muhammad Ali and Babe Ruth, he is perhaps the representation of the sporting legend personified in a human body. For what he gave to tennis and to sport in general, for his elegance, his victories, his defeats and, above all, for what he meant for tennis, the Swiss Maestro remains the most loved tennis player ever.
Record or no record, Federer was the man who helped bring tennis to stratospheric levels of popularity. Without him, the Game would have been in greater difficulty. Why? The dominant victories, the painful defeats, the unattainable peaks of beauty of his tennis, have built an image of him in the collective imagination, which will remain imprinted forever.
If one thinks about tennis today, the first images that come to mind are not Novak Djokovic's 24th Slam title or the rise of Carlos Alcaraz. The image is that of Roger Federer, perhaps flying on the Wimbledon lawns. The many victories but, perhaps, the same number of defeats, have brought Federer closer from the divine to the human.
The man close to the gods with an atavistic desire to always be the best, but who often had to experience real sporting dramas, first with Rafael Nadal, then above all with Navak Djokovic. And the crowds loved him for this, as if Roger were a father who hugs his millions of children, scattered around the world, rejoicing at his every victory and feeling sorry for his every defeat.
This is his true, great legacy, which no one on the horizon seems to be able to collect. For the first time since his retirement last July, Roger Federer returned to Center Court at Wimbledon. Guest of the Royal Box and Princess Kate Middleton, the Swiss received a long and emotional standing ovation before the match between Elena Rybakina and Shelby Rogers.
Federer recounted a curious episode linked to his presence at the All England Club and tried to explain the different sensations he felt compared to the 2022 visit, when he celebrated 100 years of the most famous Center Court in the world together with the majority of tennis players and tennis players who have won Wimbledon at least once in their career.
At that time, Roger had not yet retired and the desire to compete played a cruel joke on him.
Roger Federer's life after tennis
In an exclusive interview given to the Wall Street Journal newspaper, Federer explained: "My father joined me in the Royal Box and asked me: Wouldn't you like to be on the court, instead of sitting here? My answer was clear: For the love of God, no.
I'm very happy to be sitting here. I was happy and at peace with myself. I enjoyed the show even without playing. In 2022, when I was in camps celebrating Central's 100th anniversary, I felt like I didn't really want to be there.
Obviously it was important to be there and be part of that event, but I felt a feeling of pain and a sense of dissatisfaction. This year I was much happier when I returned; just as people were happy to see me." Federer finally focused on life after tennis.
The Swiss hasn't stopped training, but he is still dealing with some knee problems: "After accompanying the children to school, I go straight to the gym. I've had a lot of knee problems, so I'm still in the recovery phase.
I don't get to do much cardio - I mostly train with weights, as well as work on my abs and quads. I have a physiotherapist who follows me, the same one I have worked with for seven years, and we see each other four times a week."
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