'I had times in my games with Roger Federer where...', says ATP ace

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'I had times in my games with Roger Federer where...', says ATP ace

Roger Federer has had to deal with injuries in the past two seasons. The Swiss star played just 19 matches between 2020 and 2021, a statistic that speaks volumes about his physical difficulties. The former world number 1 has racked up nine wins and four defeats this year, modest haul for a legend of his caliber.

The round of 16 at Roland Garros and the quarterfinals at Wimbledon were his best seasonal results, before giving up what would have been his last Olympics. In fact, the King announced that he suffered a knee relapse and had to operate for the third time in the last 18 months.

The 20-time Grand Slam champion is expected to return to the circuit in the summer of 2022. His presence at the Championships is highly doubtful, as Roger himself admitted a few weeks ago. During a long interview with 'ESPN Argentina', ATP number 13 Diego Schwartzman expressed his admiration for Federer.

The 40-year-old from Basel defeated 'El Peque' in all four head-to-head matches.

Schwartzman praises Roger Federer

"Roger Federer is a gentleman, he's perfect on the pitch, but on the outside he's even more perfect," Schwartzman said.

"In the players' room joking around with everyone and being close to everyone, that's impressive. But on the court, he makes you feel like you have no idea what to do with him." Schwartzman chalked it up to the variety of shots Federer had at his disposal, the most diverse assortment in tennis history in his opinion.

"I had times in my games with him where I felt good playing, and it seemed like he was bored and was going to beat me whenever he wanted," Schwartzman said. "He has to be the one with the most variations and tennis repertoire in history." The ATP and WTA have both been struggling after 2020.

The effects of the pandemic affected both associations adversely. In fact, the ATP has recently announced that there will be pay cuts in the prize money for their tournaments, starting 2022. As per the official website of the Association of Tennis Professionals, the prize money at the Adelaide 1 tournament is reduced.

Its pre-pandemic figure was $546,355. However, it has now come down to a flat $500,000 USD. Furthermore, as more tournaments will host a limited-capacity crowd (sometimes 50 percent capacity), the prize money will dip further. In fact, for all ATP 500s and 250 tournaments, the money would be deducted by half!