Roger Federer Rules Out Retirement In ‘Immediate Future’ But No Guarantee Of Return To Wimbledon - UBITENNIS
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Roger Federer Rules Out Retirement In ‘Immediate Future’ But No Guarantee Of Return To Wimbledon

The former world No.1 admits he is finding certain parts of his game harder compared to the past as he approaches his 40th birthday.

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Roger Federer (SUI) waves to the crowd as he leaves the court after being defeated by Hubert Hurkacz (POL) in the quarter-final of the Gentlemen's Singles on Centre Court at The Championships 2021. Held at The All England Lawn Tennis Club, Wimbledon. Day 9 Wednesday 07/07/2021. Credit: AELTC/Ben Solomon

Roger Federer’s return to Wimbledon came to a bitter end on Wednesday when he was comprehensively beaten in the quarter-finals by Polish world No.18 Hubert Hurkacz.

 

The eight-time champion could only win nine games during what was his first straight sets defeat at the tournament since 2002. Federer, who had defeated seeds Cameron Norrie and Lorenzo Sonego earlier in the tournament, looked to be far from his best during what was an error-stricken performance. Towards the closing stages of the match the Swiss Maestro rapidly faltered and ended up getting bageled. Something that hasn’t happened to him at a major since the 2008 French Open final.

Federer’s disappointing exit comes during a season which has evolved around his goal of trying to peak in time for the tournament. After missing most of 2020 due to a knee injury which required two surgeries, the 39-year-old told reporters back in March that playing once again at The All England Club is his main motivation. Now his run at Wimbledon has ended, there are fears that he may not return again.

“I’m actually very happy I made it as far as I did and I actually was able to play Wimbledon at the level that I did after everything I went through,” said Federer. “Of course I would like to play again, but at my age you’re just never sure what’s around the corner.”

Set to turn 40 next month, Federer is the oldest player in the top 150 and the eight oldest to have an ATP ranking of any sort. Japanese world No.820 Toshihide Matsui is 43. Over the past 20 years he has established himself as one of the sports all-time grants with the help of winning 103 ATP titles and earning more than $130M in prize money. He has become one of the highest paid athletes in the world with Forbes.com estimating his earnings to be in the region of $90M between 2020-2021.

Over the coming days Federer and his team will plot their next move amid uncertainty over his participation in the upcoming Tokyo Olympics. Although it is still too early to write him off yet. Renowned for being coy about his future plans, he clarified if he was considering retiring from the sport in the ‘immediate future’ when questioned by reporters in London.

“No, it’s just about having perspective,” he replied. “You need a goal when you’re going through rehab with what I did. You can’t think of the entire mountain to climb at once. You got to go in steps. Wimbledon was the initial first super step.’
“I knew it was going to be really hard, to be honest. Now I just got to talk to the team, take my time and not feel rushed. I got to take my time, make the right decision and the one decision I want to take and where I feel most comfortable.”

One of the things athletes can’t prevent is getting old with Federer being the first to admit he is finding certain parts of his game difficult compared to the past. For him, the main focus is looking at everything in perspective with continued belief that he can still be a force to be reckoned with on the Tour.

Clearly there’s still a lot of things missing in my game that maybe 10, 15, 20 years ago were very simple and very normal for me to do,” he admits. “Nowadays they don’t happen naturally anymore. I got to always put in the extra effort mentally to remind myself, remember to do this or do that. I have a lot of ideas on the court, but sometimes I can’t do what I want to do.

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Carlos Alcaraz reaches his first ATP Tour final in Umag

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Spanish Next Gen star Carlos Alcaraz secured a spot in his first ATP tour-level final with a 6-2 7-6 (7-3) at the Plava Laguna Croatia Open in Umag. 

 

Alcaraz has become the youngest ATP Tour finalist since 18-year-old Kei Nishikori won the Delray Beach title in 2008. 

Alcaraz broke twice to open up a 4-0 lead and held his next service games to close out the first set 6-2. 

Ramos Vinolas came back from a break down three times in the second set, when Alcaraz served for the match. Alcaraz battled through the second-set tie-break to clinch the win after two hours. 

Alcaraz set up a final against Richard Gasquet, who battled past German qualifier Daniel Altmeier 7-6 (7-2) 3-6 6-3 after three hours and 11 minutes. 

Gasquet has become the second oldest finalist in tournament history. The 35-year-old saved seven of hi sten break points, but he converted just just 3 of his 17 break points.  

Gasquet rallied from a break down twice to draw level to 4-4 before winning the tie-break 7-2. Altmeier converted his third break point in the eighth game to win the second set 6-3. Altmeier saved three break points in the second game, before Gasquet converted his second break point in the sixth game to win the second set 6-3. 

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Novak Djokovic Cruises Past Dellien In Olympics Opener

Novak Djokovic’s bid for a historic golden slam continued in Tokyo.

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Novak Djokovic (@ITFTennis - Twitter)

Novak Djokovic cruised past Hugo Dellien 6-2 6-2 to open his bid for a gold medal at the Olympics.

 

The world number one’s bid to achieve the golden slam is on after thrashing the Bolivian in humid conditions.

A perfect start for the Serbian who is looking to achieve the one thing he is yet to achieve and that’s win a gold medal.

Next for Djokovic will be Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff.

In 32C temperatures, Djokovic was looking to start his campaign off against Bolivian veteran Hugo Dellien.

The slow paced courts would suit Dellien as he engaged in some long rallies with the world number one early on.

Despite creating three break points in the fourth game, Djokovic would fail to break early on.

However Djokovic increased his level mixing up the pace and depth of his shots to create angles for simple winners.

On his fifth break point Djokovic would break for a 4-2 lead and the top seed would break for a second time as Dellien had no answers for the Serb’s defensive skills. First set to Djokovic in 33 minutes.

A similar pattern evolved in the second set only this time Djokovic did get a break in the fourth game, breaking to love.

Accurate serving and construction of points gave Djokovic an easy first round match as another break secured the match and sealed his spot into the second round.

A fine performance in tough conditions gave Djokovic’s bid for history the best possible start.

Next for Djokovic will be Jan-Lennard Struff who beat Thiago Monteiro 6-3 6-4.

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Brandon Nakashima shocks John Isner to reach first ATP final in Los Cabos

Brandon Nakashima stunned John Isner to reach the final in Los Cabos.

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Brandon Nakashima (@AbiertoLosCabos - Twitter)

The American became the youngest American to reach a final outside the US since Andy Roddick back in 2001.

 

Brandon Nakashima booked his spot in the final beating an out of sorts John Isner 7-5, 6-4 in one hour and 28 minutes firing 12 aces and winning 82% points with his first serve.

“It’s always going to be tough playing against him, It’s always so hard to return his serve and try to get into the rallies with him but I tried to get back as many returns as I could and there was blocking or chipping the return or hitting over it and just try to mix it up a lot while getting different looks and I knew when I had the opportunities and when I got close in games I knew I had to take advantage of that as much as possible so luckily I was able to do it and of course taking care of my service games was important as well”.

For the first six games of the opening set, neither player had an issue holding serve but at 3-3, it was the San Diego native with the first chance to break but was denied by the world number 39’s big serve.

At 5-4, the world number 134 had two more chances to break and he got the crucial break and served out the first set.

Winning the first set seemed to invigorate the 19-year-old and he earned an early chance to break in the first game of the second set and broke to take a 1-0 lead. Once again that one break was enough to serve out the match and seal the victory.

After the match, Nakashima spoke about becoming the first American player to reach a final outside the US since Andy Roddick back in 2001.

“It feels great and it’s a big accomplishment for me and of course all the Americans, we like to play in the US but it’s nice to see that I am playing well outside the US and luckily it’s not too far from my home here so I have been enjoying it here a lot both on and off the court and really looking forward to playing tomorrow again”.

Nakashima will face the number one seed Cameron Norrie in the final and can feel confident as the last time these two players met, the American beat him.

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