After thirteen months, Roger Federer will return a field to the ATP 250 in Doha, scheduled for 8 March. In an interview with SRF TV, the 39-year-old Swiss champion explained the reasons for choosing him. "I thought a lot about the right moment to return.
In Australia it would have been a bit too early for the knee - underlined 'King Roger', number 5 in the ATP ranking - I still wanted to return to a smaller tournament, with a different level of concentration and stress"
Federer took three Qatar titles in seven appearances between 2002 and 2012, only exiting once before the semi-final. He triumphed in 2005 in the final over his current coach Ivan Ljubicic, in 2006 over Gael Monfils, and in 2011 beating Nikolay Davydenko The Swiss will therefore embellish a scoreboard that already includes Dominic Thiem, Stan Wawrinka and Monfils, Matteo Berrettini's next opponent in the Atp Cup .
After Doha, he added, Federer plans to play another tournament if conditions permit and then devote himself to training for the clay court season. An announcement that makes Italian fans dream, who hope to see him back on the pitch at the Internazionali d'Italia.
In the summer, he will then focus on Halle, Wimbledon, the Olympics and the US Open. "I will not try to remain pathologically on the circuit," said Federer, who underwent two knee operations last year and was surprised at the attention with which he followed the results and games in his absence.
In his first two Grand Slam main draw appearances, Indian player Sumit Nagal was pitted against two of the biggest names in the game - Roger Federer and Dominic Thiem.
Nagal praises Roger Federer
"I would have liked to play some more tournaments (going into the Australian Open)," Sumit Nagal said.
"Unfortunately, I had to end my last season much earlier. Then, I tried coming back but I wasn't ready yet. That was the sad part about it. I am trying to practice as much as possible. I am trying to get better every day so I'm ready for the Australian Open.
I had a really good break which I took in November, I needed it," the 23-year-old added. "I feel very happy to be back on the court, even though I had a tough loss yesterday. I'm happy that I'm here, I have 10 more months to go to have a chance to play in the tournaments."
Sumit Nagal, who is accompanied only by his coach for the long trip to Melbourne, went on to talk about what he learned while competing against champions of the sport such as Roger Federer and Dominic Thiem. "What I learnt form him (Roger Federer) is how he understands himself and how he reads the game," Nagal said. "He'll never make the same mistake twice. He's that good."