Elena Rybakina admitted she was in a state of shock when she saw the great Roger Federer for the first time in person. Rybakina, 23, grew up watching and idolizing Federer. Several years ago at Wimbledon, Rybakina was competing in the Wimbledon girls' singles event when she saw Federer at The All England Club.
In a video of Roland Garros, Rybakina and several other tennis stars were asked if they were ever starstruck in front of a celebrity. "I think when I played the juniors at Wimbledon, I saw, for the first time, Roger very close up.
I was shocked," Rybakina said in a video for Roland Garros.
(@sebsharfam) May 29, 2023
Rybakina grew up looking up to Federer
At Wimbledon, Federer is an absolute icon and a record eight-time champion. Last summer, Rybakina became a Grand Slam champion after beating Ons Jabeur in the Wimbledon final.
After her Wimbledon triumph, Rybakina revealed that she was always a Federer fan. "I've always liked how Roger Federer is playing. Just his game is amazing but, yeah, except him, I was just enjoying watching the matches no matter who plays and, yeah, it's just a joy to watch any match especially when it's great fights," Rybakina said after winning Wimbledon.
At this year's Australian Open, Rybakina reached her second Grand Slam final. During her run at Melbourne Park, Rybakina talked about being inspired by Federer. “The idol was for me, like, & still Roger Federer.
From the woman's side, I would say that I like just to watch, if I had the chance, like different players. I won't say from the woman's I had like an idol," Rybakina said in January. After reaching two Grand Slam finals in her last three Majors, Rybakina is now aiming to also make a strong French Open run.
Rybakina recently won a WTA 1000 event in Rome and she is considered among the top favorites for the French Open title.
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