The 2021 edition of Wimbledon couldn't have ended worse for Roger Federer, who was literally demolished by Hubert Hurkacz in the quarter-finals on Center Court. The Swiss phenomenon, who had played a good tournament so far, even got a bagel in the third set.
Unloaded, slow, inaccurate, ineffective in serving, are just some of the shortcomings highlighted by the 39-year-old from Basel in one of the worst performances he has staged in his career. In the post-match, as was to be expected, there was no shortage of questions relating to a possible imminent withdrawal from the scene.
Although the Swiss immediately silenced these rumors, it is useless to deny how the gap from the best players seems abysmal at this stage. Among those closest to the 20-time Grand Slam champion is certainly Heinz Gunthardt, former ATP number 25 and excellent coach, who has worked with illustrious names such as Jelena Dokic, Jennifer Capriati, Ana Ivanovic and above all Steffi Graf.
In an interview with 'Tagesanzeiger', he expressed his thoughts on King Roger with great clarity.
Gunthardt on Roger Federer
"Given the preparation he had for the tournament, the quarterfinals are a good result.
What I think should be clarified is that Roger Federer has not raised his level especially in London compared to Roland Garros; in Paris he was already fine, but it was with a losing mentality, as happened in Doha. He made it clear to everyone that he was going there to acquire sensations and that what really mattered was Wimbledon, so when he arrived in London he felt the pressure" - Heinz Gunthardt stated.
Analyzing his game, he gives an important clue to what happened against Hurkacz. "You could see how against Mannarino, in the first game, he jumped onto the court with fear of defeat. He practically did not hit a backhand ball, he dedicated himself to executing slices, he did not want to miss.
Facing Hubert he had the sensation from the beginning that he could not keep up with the rhythm in long rallies, so he had to be very aggressive, he had to play all or nothing in most of his shots, I think he rushed a bit.
To beat the Pole on a day with so much wind you need to make a perfect tennis, but nothing went the way Roger wanted. He got few free points with his serve, he didn't feel comfortable and that affected his confidence and mobility", said a Günthardt who believes that positive things can be extracted.