Roger Federer, a 20-time Major champion, ended his career in September last year at the Laver Cup. The entire tennis world paid tribute to the Swiss master, idol of many young players around the world. Interestingly, Federer had struggled to control his temper until the early 2000s, experiencing many outbursts during his junior days.
Although he later became a calm and collected champion, it would have been difficult to recognize Roger during some of his early junior and professional events. The Swiss could not contain his temper from the first competition matches in lower categories.
He used to throw rackets, curse and say something about every point he lost. Speaking of that chapter of his career in 2002, Roger admitted that it took him years to start improving in that segment. The Swiss realized that it cost him too much energy to fight himself, so he did everything possible to trade him before stepping on the ATP Tour.
Reminiscing about those days, Federer also mentioned how his parents sometimes felt embarrassed while watching him play, urging him to change his attitude or go to tournaments without them! Roger was much better in 2001, reaching his first quarterfinals at Roland Garros and Wimbledon and dethroning Wimbledon king Pete Sampras.
Two years later, Federer captured his first major tournament crown and became world number 1 after the 2004 Australian Open. "When I was very young, and I started playing at the age of three, I was always swearing around the court, throwing rackets and all that.
My parents were embarrassed and told me to stop behaving like that, otherwise they wouldn't come anymore. I had to settle down, but it wasn't until I was 19 that I started to improve in that aspect. I used to complain about every point I lost, and I don't know how I got over it.
I thought I wasted too much energy by always being mad at myself."
Federer on how constantly reinventing his training methods
Roger Federer believes it is important for even the greatest and most successful athletes to reinvent themselves.
"It's always very interesting to see what the greatest athletes of all time ended up doing once they stopped," Roger Federer said in a recently-released interview to CNBC, months before announcing his own retirement. It's not a simple one-way road and I think it is allowed to have many bends and I think we see that often with athletes.
Some of those people maybe feel that after doing the same thing for too long, it gets a bit monotone, always the same, and 'I just need a change'," the Swiss great opined.