Roger Federer: 'I hope there will be some atmosphere but...'

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Roger Federer: 'I hope there will be some atmosphere but...'

Everything is ready for the Qatar Open: Roger Federer, after 13 months of absence from the ATP circuit, returns to the field in Doha, where he will immediately try to find his tennis, his game and, above all, to have answers.

positive from his physique. It will not be easy at all, there are those who went so far as to talk about Roger Federer's return to the field as one of the greatest challenges in the history of sport. One thing is certain: the Swiss's career is chock full of big challenges - and big business.

Just days away from returning to competitive action at the ATP Doha Open, Swiss superstar Roger Federer opened up on several subjects, during a Q&A session with children in the Qatar capital on Saturday.

Roger Federer is hoping for “some atmosphere” at his comeback event

Asked to pick the best moment of his career, Roger Federer picked his debut Grand Slam at Wimbledon 2003 as it marked the culmination of all the “hard work” and “sacrifices” he made as a child.

Federer was then asked a question on Novak Djokovic, who, at 18 titles currently, trails the Swiss and Big Three rival Rafael Nadal for the most number of Grand Slam trophies in the men’s game. The Swiss said it is Djokovic’s “great balance” between defense and offense which makes him “one of the greatest ever”.

On playing in front of reduced crowds on account of the pandemic, Federer said he is “curious” to find out how it affects his game, if at all. “I haven’t played in these Covid times, so I hope there will be some atmosphere,” the veteran said.

Federer has not played competitively since the semi-finals of the 2020 Australian Open and had two knee surgeries last year that forced him to sit out the rest of the season after Melbourne. But he will make his long-awaited return to the court in the Middle East as he looks to build up his fitness for the French Open.

And the 103-time ATP Tour titlist has now learned that he will take on either Frenchman Jeremy Chardy or British No 1 Dan Evans in his first match back. The 39-year-old has been given a bye into the second round and will have to wait to find out who he faces of the duo until they go head-to-head in round one.

Should he get past either world No 64 Chardy or No 28-ranked Evans, the 20-time Grand Slam champion is expected to take on Croatian Borna Coric.