On Thursday, the 20-time Major champion Roger Federer announced he had to undergo a knee surgery a day earlier, withdrawing from all the events until Halle in June! Roger was the semi-finalist at the Australian Open, battling past John Millman and Tennys Sandgren before falling to Novak Djokovic in three sets, struggling with a groin injury but keeping things quiet about his knee that has been bothering him for quite some time now.
The pain couldn't go away and the Swiss decided to undergo that surgery and get back stronger for the second part of the season. World no. 3 will skip Dubai, Indian Wells, Bogota exhibition against Alexander Zverev, Miami and Roland Garros, planning to return in Halle and Wimbledon and revive his grass magic again, just a couple of weeks before turning 39.
Paul Annacone, who worked with Roger between July 2010 and October 2013, is confident about Roger's return, just like the one we saw in 2017 when he won two Majors after skipping the second part of 2016, never writing Federer off and having faith in his decisions, as always in the past.
Annacone believes Roger could be a contender for Wimbledon crown again, wasting two match points a year ago in the final against Novak Djokovic and feeling eager to leave the setback behind and start all over in four months.
"The big challenge in my experience is the older you get, the harder it is to come back from anything," Annacone said to New York Times. "These all-time greats are aberrations, not the rule, so you risk your peril to predict what's going to happen.
When I started with him in the summer of 2010, people were wondering when he was going to retire. I can promise you he is a very thoughtful decision-maker. He approaches everything from the macro perspective: what gives him the best chance to do well and stay healthy for a longer period.
We take for granted the way he plays that he's generally pretty healthy, but he plays through a lot. Roger just got to the semi-final of the Australian Open by the skin of his teeth basically, and those are the moments all those greats live for.
I'm not quite ready to write him off; if you look at his grass-court record and how unique his game is for grass, I don't see any reason he can't still win Wimbledon."