Both on and off the pitch, Roger Federer always finds a way to impress his many fans. In a recent video published by Barilla, we saw the 20-time Grand Slam champion surprise two Italian girls, Vittoria and Carola, by going to Finale Ligure for a very special meeting.
The former World number 1 not only played a high-flying tennis match with them, but also got the two very young promises an invitation to the Rafael Nadal Academy. In a behind-the-scenes interview, Roger shared some unpublished details relating to his life, such as his passion for pasta and sweets.
Later, the girls admitted that they had initially doubted that there was actually an icon like Federer in front of them. Vittoria confessed that she briefly thought it was a mannequin.
Vittoria e Carola on Roger Federer
"We didn't suspect anything, more than a double, I was convinced it was a mannequin because it didn't seem possible to me that he was in flesh and blood,” Vittoria said.
“He showed us a video on the mobile in which he dribbles with his sister: he will have been 4-5 years old," Vittoria added. "He also recommended that at our age we played tennis with joy and fun, without stress”.
During the same shoot, Roger Federer revealed his preferred pre-match food - pasta. Vittoria and Carola, however, were more curious about the Swiss’ favorite dessert and they asked him if he’d ever tasted tiramisu.
“He admitted that he did not like him as a child," Vittoria said. "When he grew up, however, he became fond of our favorite dessert. As Roger travels around tournaments, he tells us that he has tasted it in every restaurant he has been to”.
Federer made the occasion even more special by giving Carola and Vittoria a series of precious memorabilia, including the racket used against Novak Djokovic in this year's Australian Open semi-final (the last official tournament played by King Roger).
Does Federer still have something to prove to himself? Is he desperate to ward off Rafa Nadal and Novak Djokovic from overhauling his Grand Slam tally by securing at least a couple of more slams before riding off into the sunset? Or does he simply not know what to do if he is not playing tennis upon recovery from injury? In truth, it may be a combination of all three — a combination that could prove to be triumphant or toxic.