ATP world number 5 Roger Federer has made it known that he is not taking part in the new edition of the Australian Open 2021 in Melbourne. The physical preparation of the last few months, following the two surgeries on his right knee, was not enough.
This is the first time since 1999 that the main draw of the inaugural Grand Slam of the season will not see the presence of the Basel champion: in that edition, a very young Federer lost in the first round of qualifying against Frenchman Olivier Delaitre.
Roger has an overall record of 102 wins and 15 losses in Melbourne, including six wins and the 2009 final, which he lost to Rafael Nadal. Having turned professional in 1998, the Swiss is one of the most experienced players on the circuit and certainly the most successful ever.
Protagonist of numerous challenges against his great rival and friend Rafael Nadal, Roger has managed to overcome him 16 times out of 40 matches. His latest victory came in the 2019 Wimbledon semi-final, won by the Swiss in four sets.
Messi on Federer and Nadal
"There are a lot of incredible athletes," Barcelona legend Lionel Messi recently said, as revealed by EssentiallySports. "Rafa Nadal, Roger Federer, LeBron, in all sports there is someone who stands out and is admired for what he has done."
Federer and Nadal were also the stars of the latest Match in Africa, which took place last February in Cape Town, South Africa. After losing in the semi-final of the Australian Open 2020 at the hands of Serbian Novak Djokovic, the former number one of the Swiss world has made it known that he has undergone two surgeries and therefore skips the rest of the season on hard and clay, to return only in summer.
The subsequent COVID-19 global pandemic has further upset plans, forcing the entire Tour to take a break until August. Among the many protagonists of the new season also the Scottish Andy Murray, who will come back to the Tour from Delray Beach.
The greatests tennis stars on the planet, like Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray, Serena Williams, Naomi Osaka, Ashleigh Barty, Simona Halep and all the others, will come back for the upcoming Australian Open 2021, which will be held in Melbourne from 8 February: it will be the most awaited sports event of the first part of the new season.
It will be a very spectacualr season, and all of us hope without the problems of the last one, with some presence of the crowd in the courts across the world. Roger Federer, after he said he will not play the Australian Slam, should come back on the court, for the joy of his fans, at the end of February or at the beginning of March.