Roger Federer's career officially came to an end on Friday 23 September 2022. The former world number 1 played his last match alongside his arch-rival Rafael Nadal at the Laver Cup, the exhibition he founded himself in 2017.
As the months went by, the Swiss realized he couldn't return to the top level and decided to hang up his racket at 41 years old. The 20-time Grand Slam champion had tried a timid return in 2021, collecting nine wins and four defeats.
The Basel legend has undergone three knee operations in the last two and a half years, but the problem has not been resolved. The King received a splendid tribute at the O2 Arena in London, useful to certify the enormous impact he has had on tennis and sport in general.
The news of his retirement generated a wave of reactions all over the world, as well as having sanctioned the end of an era. In the latest edition of the podcast hosted by Craig Shapiro, the former Ecuadorian player Nicolas Lapentti told what it meant to face Federer when he was in his 'prime'
Lapentti praises King Roger
"Roger Federer was that kind of a player where you would play a good shot and a better shot would come back. It was very difficult to find a weak spot," Nicolas Lapentti said on a recent episode of The Craig Shapiro Tennis Podcast.
"Roger was awesome in all aspects," Lapentti further said. "He was great on the court, he was great off the court, he was unbelievable in the locker room, he used to hang out and be funny and do jokes. He loved soccer so we talked about soccer.
He was all class. Of course, what he did to the tennis world was so amazing. I think no one will ever match what he did," he expressed. Nicolas Lapentti also reflected on Roger Federer's retirement night at the Laver Cup: "That was huge," said Lapentti.
"I have a couple of friends who were in the stadium and they were texting me and saying, 'I have never seen in my whole life the whole stadium crying.' It was crazy but that's what Roger did to the tennis world," he expressed.
"We played doubles in Halle in 2000, when I was still better than him," Lapentti said with a laugh, adding, "He was still coming up. In 2000, I was up there, and he was probably no. 30 in the world and he was coming up, he was this young kid from Switzerland playing great tennis."