The last two years have not been easy for Roger Federer at all. The former world number 1 had to deal with a serious right knee injury, which significantly limited his appearances on the pitch. Suffice it to say that the Swiss phenomenon played just 13 official matches in 2021, collecting nine wins and four losses.
After reaching the quarterfinals at Wimbledon, the 20-time Grand Slam champion announced that he has suffered a knee relapse and is undergoing surgery for the third time in 18 months. The King hopes to return to the field in late summer or early autumn, but it is still too early to give up.
As admitted by his longtime coach Severin Luthi, the 40-year-old from Basel is highly unlikely to participate in the 2022 edition of Wimbledon. Roger could make his return to the Laver Cup, which will take place at London's O2 Arena in late September.
In a recent interview with 'Tennis Magazin', Alexander Waske praised Federer's attitude both on and off the court.
Waske reflects on Roger Federer
"In all my years, I have never seen Roger Federer arrogant and disrespectful towards other players.
During the 2006 French Open, we were in the massage room watching a match of a player who was about to win the biggest game of his career and suddenly couldn't hit the ball," Waske said. In a conversation with Waske, the Swiss had revealed that he preferred to go into contests as the favorite because it helped him enjoy his time on the court even more.
"I once asked him, 'Roger, I often cramp up when I go into a match as the favorite. How do you deal with that?' He said, 'I need to feel like a favorite. I always go onto the pitch with the same feeling because I know how it feels when I'm playing well.'
That surprised me because no one feels the same all the time. Every day is different. He said that the lightness on the pitch is a matter of feeling and he [simply] slips into this feeling," Waske said. "He does this through his pre-match routines: warming up, throwing in, showering, eating, taping his ankles, wrapping grips, etc.
You can compare [Roger Federer's mindset] to actors who also get into feelings and not only pretend but also feel these feelings," Waske said. "Roger borrowed something from acting by finding a way to dive into and own that emotion."