An eight-time Wimbledon champion Roger Federer walked onto his beloved Centre Court on Sunday as the last of the legends and former winners. Celebrating 100 years of Centre Court, the organizers gathered numerous tennis legends from different eras, including Federer, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray.
Missing the singles Wimbledon draw for the first time since 1998, Federer was emotional during his speech, saying he would love to play at his beloved tournament one more time before his retirement. Struggling with a knee injury, Roger has played only six tournaments and 19 matches since the start of 2020, undergoing three surgeries and still doing his best to compete again.
Federer targets the Laver Cup as the return point and wants to play as many tournaments as possible in 2023 if he remains healthy. Roger returned to the court in March last year, and he showed his best tennis at Wimbledon.
Roger Federer wants to compete at Wimbledon next year.
The Swiss took down Adrian Mannarino, Richard Gasquet, Cameron Norrie and Lorenzo Sonego to enter the last eight as the oldest player in the Open era.
Hubert Hurkacz defeated Federer 6-3, 7-6, 6-0 in the quarter-final, and it's Roger's last match on the Tour so far. He underwent the third knee surgery a few weeks later and missed the rest of the season and the start of 2022.
Federer has been working hard on a comeback, and he expects to play the Laver Cup and Basel before turning his focus on 2023. Roger has won eight Wimbledon titles and wants to compete on Centre Court again before leaving the sport.
"I have been lucky enough to play many matches on this court. It feels awkward to be here in a different role today, but it's great to share the court with other champions, as Novak said. This court has given me my biggest wins and losses.
One of my most memorable highlights came in 2001, walking out here with Pete Sampras, to whom I would like to give a big shoutout - he has also inspired many of us to play, be successful here and represent the sport well. I hope I can return to Wimbledon one more time," Roger Federer said.