Yesterday evening, terrible news hit Roger Federer fans. The former world number 1 has announced that he will undergo his third operation on his right knee, confirming that the injury he suffered at Wimbledon was more serious than expected.
The Swiss champion hopes to be able to return to the field in 2022, but has admitted that at his age there are no guarantees in this regard. The 40-year-old from Basel had played just 13 games since his return to the tour last March, often giving the feeling of not having solved the physical problems that had brought him under the knife.
The quarterfinals reached at Wimbledon had rekindled a flame of optimism, promptly extinguished by the forfeits at the Tokyo Olympics and the American Masters 1000. King Roger's goal is to allow himself a catwalk in 2022, and then announce his retirement at Wimbledon or perhaps in his own Basel.
During the last edition of the 'Match Points' podcast, journalists Carole Bouchard and Simon Cambers analyzed the prospects of the 20-time Grand Slam champion.
Federer withdrew from the US Open
"You are Roger Federer; you don’t end your career on a bagel in Wimbledon," Carole Bouchard said.
"I believe he is going to try to play one more Wimbledon, but that means he needs to play Australia, he needs to try to play some clay, he needs to get in shape. So I believe that he will try. (He is) 40 years old and we are still asking him to play one more Wimbledon," she added.
"He is one of the biggest champions, all sports considered. He is going to try; I believe we will see him in London next year. I just hope the knee is going to stay quiet." Simon Cambers, a writer for publications like New York Times, ESPN and The Guardian, echoed Martion Bartoli's belief that Roger Federer would want to end his career on a high.
"I guess he’s (Roger Federer) hoping — and we can hope — that he gets the chance to end his career the way he wants to end it," Cambers said. "That's the big deal for any big sportsman or woman, isn't it? To go out the way you want to, on a high, or at least without injury taking it away from you."
In just two weeks’ time, the eyes of the world will feast on the US Open. While winning in Flushing Meadows is the ultimate objective, the Cincinnati Open 2021 presents an opportunity for players to fine tune themselves to the American hard courts.