2021 did not give Roger Federer any particular joys. The former world number 1 played just 13 competitive matches last year, racking up nine wins against four defeats. The 20-time Grand Slam champion did everything he could to get in good shape at Wimbledon, but his run on the London lawns was cut short in the quarters at the hands of Hubert Hurkacz.
The Pole took away the satisfaction of handing a bagel to the King on Center Court. A few weeks later, the Swiss phenomenon announced that he had suffered a relapse in his right knee and had to operate for the third time in the last 18 months.
According to what was reported by the Swiss press, the 40-year-old from Basel would have recently resumed training in Dubai. His return to the circuit will not take place before the summer, as Roger himself admitted some time ago.
During a long interview with Sportskeeda, Purav Raja analyzed Federer's prolonged absence and the imminent generational change.
Raja opens up on Roger Federer
Purav Raja was also asked whether he thinks the 2022 Australian Open will mark a generational change, considering the likes of Roger Federer and the Williams sisters are not playing.
"The change is already happening slowly, the change will come, the change will be there," Raja said. "I don't see one particular slam being the change. I don't see this Australian Open being the change.
The change will gradually come, like it came for everything else, like we saw everyone retire slowly. So within the next three or four-five years, we will see a change, " Raja added. Raja concluded by emphasizing that the sport is always bigger than the player.
He said that while players come and go, "tennis stays on." "But tennis is always bigger. Wimbledon's always bigger than the player, Australian Open's always bigger than the player. We are just players, we come and go.
The tennis stays on, and the tournaments live on - and we play for those tournaments," he explained. After Wimbledon, Federer aggravated his knee, which already had a bad history. In fact, in 2020, Federer underwent surgery on his right knee twice.
Following his exit from the tour in July 2021, he had his knee operated on for a third time. Ever since then, Federer has been in the process of recovery, slowly but gradually regaining his health. Now, there are rumors from Switzerland that the legendary player has finally returned to training.