Last Dance for Roger Federer
Last dance for Roger Federer at the Laver Cup
20-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer will feature in his last match as a professional tennis player, playing doubles alongside friend and 22-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal at the fifth edition of the Laver Cup, holding at the O2 Arena in London, which runs from the 23rd to 25th of September.
The 41-year-old had announced on the 15th of September that he was calling time on his prestigious career due to a lingering knee injury and age.
“As many of you know, the past three years have presented me with challenges in the form of injuries and surgeries,” Federer wrote in an emotional retirement letter. “I’ve worked hard to return to full competitive form. But I also know my body’s capacities and limits, and its message to me lately has been clear.
“I am 41 years old. I have played more than 1,500 matches over 24 years. Tennis has treated me more generously than I ever would have dreamt, and now I must recognize when it’s time to end my competitive career.”
Federer’s fans had been hoping the Swiss Maestro would fully return to tour this season, but he has listened to his body and concluded it is time to end his illustrious career.
Federer decided he would play only doubles at the Laver Cup as he does not he would be able to compete adequately with his ailing knee.
“It’s an event I don’t want to mess with, but I know my limitations,” he said. “Playing with Rafa would be an absolute dream.”
While they were fierce rivals on court and faced each other 40 times, Federer and Nadal have formed an admirable friendship and over the years expressed their love and respect for each other. It is definitely the most exemplary ‘bromance’ in tennis.
“For us as well to go through a career that we both have had and to come out on the other side and being able to have a nice relationship, I think is maybe a great message as well to not just tennis but sports and maybe even beyond,” Federer said on his friendship with Nadal.
As is customary every year, the Laver Cup will be contested between Team Europe and Team World.
In Team Europe, Federer and Nadal are joined by the fellow ‘Big Four’ cast, 21-time Grand Slam champion Novak Djokovic and three-time Grand Slam Andy Murray, as well as World No.2 Casper Ruud, World No.6 Stefanos Tsitsipas and No.15 Matteo Berrettini, who comes in as an alternate. Team Europe are captained by retired former World No.1 Bjorn Borg.
Team World includes World No.12 Taylor Fritz, No.13 Felix Auger-Aliassime, No.17 Diego Schwartzman, No.19 Frances Tiafoe, No.22 Alex De Minaur, No.128 Jack Sock and No.29 Tommy Paul who comes in as alternate. They are captained by retired seven-time Grand Slam champion John McEnroe.
Day 1 matches:
Casper Ruud v Jack Sock
Stefanos Tsitsipas v Diego Schwartzman
Andy Murray v Alex De Minaur
Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal v Jack Sock and Frances Tiafoe
Team Europe have won the four previous editions of the Laver Cup and this time, Team World will be looking to finally get on the board.
The Laver Cup has always attracted a lot of buzz but it is even more so this year, as everyone strives to witness Federer playing for the last time.
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