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Old 05-18-2012, 11:21 PM   #1741
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Great great interview in Italian :
Fed's interview about his life and tennis

according to this translation from bluesoleil on GM : many things to think about

Quote:
While we wait for Roger [...], the photographer Gianni Caccia who attends the tour since thirty years tells me about that time in Miami "I was doubled over in pain . Crossing Federer, he stops and asks me: what happened ? I explain: a damn vertebra. I'll send you Pavel, my osteopath, he says , and I'll tell him to stay with you until he makes you stand straight. Two years later we meet again at the U.S. Open and the first thing he says is: Hey, Gianni! How's your vertebrae? He is like that: he sees others, he doesn't forget, he is generous. I wish there were more people like him around... . "And he shakes his head.

In a small room of the Foro Italico Federer awaits us standing, he sits only after the greetings and only after us. He says that he went to see the Colosseum and St. Peter, that his hip hurts, what language I prefer for our conversation - French, English, German, a bit of Italian? - And that if I want, he is ready. [...]

Rod Laver stopped at thirty, like Agassi, McEnroe and Sampras at thirty-three, Borg at twenty-seven . Martina Navratilova has said a few months ago: "Roger has record achievements, he could spend the rest of his life sipping margaritas." [...] Are you thinking about this?
"Oh, sure! But it'd be more right to answer to you in the past tense: I thought about it. I made decisions and I put the question aside. Like I am convinced that if you want something too much you will never have it, in the same way I think that if I thought too much about my retirement my career would end much sooner than I expected. I do not hide from reality. I have behind my shoulders more road than it remains to be traveled, I know that tennis will stop very soon. "

What decisions did you take?
"To play for other four, maybe five years. I feel well and I hope that my body won't betray me."

I read somewhere that you want to win the Olympics in London and Wimbledon once again. Is it true?
"In my heart there are many things. In my head I know I want to go back to being number one."

Andre Agassi wrote: "I hate tennis butI keep playing because I can't do otherwise. I am 36 years old, but when I wake up I feel 96. After thirty years of dashes, suddend halts, jumps and landings, this body no longer seems mine, nor does the mind. " Has this ever happened to you?
Laughs. "I must confess . I have André's book. I've only read twenty pages. I don't know why, perhaps for the simple reason that I'm not very familiar with books. Ten, fifteen years of tennis are heavy and when you get older every year feels like a couple. Often in the morning there's the presentiment of our destiny, I know the pain Agassi is talking about. My shoulder, my back ... I need to be treated, sleep well, eat healthy. You know, I cried a lot in all these years, but I have never suffered from depression. never ended up in a hole, down the well. the matches that I remember most readily are those that I was loosing and I was able to reverse. "

You give the impression of walking without shoes, as if your feet don't touch the ground. Ion Tiriac has used this comparison to explain how little effort you make in the field: "Nadal plays drums, Federer plays the piano." Do you agree?
"I was lucky I had good coaches. I am a Catholic, I must thank God for the talents he gave me."

Tennis is a criminal sport, a lot depends on almost infinitesimal spaces and times, details that may seem insignificant but are decisive. Ivan Lendl says: "With age the movements become a little slower. Not so much when running forward, but rather when inverting the run. When you start losing fractions of seconds here and there, eventually they add up and end up hurting you. We've all been there, Sampras has been there, I've been there and it will be Federer's turn too. " Do you see some warning signals?
"I've seen them all, especially when I had mononucleosis. You know what, above all? The balls. Balls came faster. I could not play either in defense or in attack. I had to stay on the baseline. Today I'm fine, I feel strong, think positive. It may seem banal, but life can be simple. "

How could the decline of an extraordinary athlete like you be managed?
"I know that I won't drag it, I will not be in tatters. I will explain: guys, this will be my last season. When my legs will stop, I'll stop. I will be happy in the other life: family, friends, my home The foundation for the poor in South Africa. I'll try to stay in tennis. I'd like to be captain of the Davis Cup for my country, to train kids, to decide routes that are unfeasible at this time. "

Are you really happy, if you can use this untranslatable word, also from a philosophical point of view?
"I'm happy, balanced and realistic. Do not forget that the Swiss are unwilling to travel with the mind to distant planets. If I have to rank happiness, I choose three moments, in chronological order: the first victory at Wimbledon, the marriage with Mirka and the birth of my daughters, a bizarre and wonderful feeling. "

Did you want Wimbledon since you were a child?
"No, my parents didn't program me like it happened to Martina Hingis. I thought about it only in '98, after the success in the junior tournament. If you won this, I said to myself, why shouldn't you do well soon in the pro tour too? ".

Did becoming a father change you?
"No, I had already my horizon. I don't need a family to keep my eyes open, knowing how the world works and how I am lucky and rich. Parenthood does not change you, it adds something to you, even physically. With Charlene and Myla I do things that I've never done or had forgotten: throwing a stone into the water, going to the zoo, holding a warm part of you in your arms. And they are life, I mean they represent the opposite end to death . At this stage of my life I'm surrounded by many people who have young children, an atmosphere that gives me a feeling of eternity. "

Airplanes, hotels, cars, locker rooms and again airplanes, hotels, cars and locker rooms. Are you bothered by loneliness, emptiness?
"Only on court, very often. I say to myself: Roger, it's too quiet in here. For this reason too, outside the court, I want to have lots of people around, I'll look for someone to keep me company during the morning breakfast too or for a coffee."

The time is up, warns the manager in charge of the Atp players in Rome. He reminds us that we had half an hour. Federer makes a gesture to him, and we keep talking.

I'll quote Agassi again , after the last time he lost to you: "It's very simple, most people have weaknesses. Federer has none. I pity those who will have to face him". Then Gianni Clerici: "The poet is Roger Federer." What is more important: winning or the perfection of the gesture?
"The wins will always tell the truth. They certify if you're good or not. I am proud to have been the best in the world at something, in a trade. People admire you, everyone listens to what you say, observe and judge what you do. Over the years I realized that if you took so much, you must return something. The technical gesture? Oh, sure: I like to see me play, feel me play, I feel happy as a child when I took the first shots with ease using a raquet and the raquet seemed like an extension of my body. I recognize myself in the definition of a classic and modern player. In tennis there are three basic strokes: serve, forehand, backhand. If you have them all you can stay on court even if two of them don't work , but if the third also leaves you then it's a disaster. "

What did you learn from defeats?
"To react. And accept that you can't always be the best."

Old dilemma: are you the greatest tennis player of all time?
"I've missed decades of history. But I know who were the champions and legends such as: Laver, Rosewall, Newcombe, Borg, Connors, McEnroe, Becker, Lendl, Agassi, Sampras ... Once the prize of a tournament was a hundred francs or a voucher for lunch, now the circuit has transformed into a huge business. We thank those who came before us, they were the ones who made possible for us to make an incredible dream come true.There's no answer over who is the greatest".
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Old 05-18-2012, 11:46 PM   #1742
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Amazing interview!
Thank you for posting it.
Roger showing a really good tennis level at 30 years old is really impressive and we all should recognize his legend is growing and growing



-----------------------------------------------
Wow I never read these before

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Originally Posted by Sunset of Age View Post
Good luck with getting your ticket!
Hope you'll be able to get a good one - I guess it will be worth the cash.
Thank you Karin, of course It'll be worth!
I'm so excited... It seems we'll have to wait 10 days until the pre-sale

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good luck to you~~
Thank you Suktuen
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Old 05-19-2012, 02:50 PM   #1743
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Old 05-22-2012, 04:30 PM   #1744
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My only concern is :

what kind of niggles-physical problems does he have exactly ?

The beginning of the year has all been very good, but now we are entering the decisive period, and the shape players will have at this moment will be decisive.

I've not found Nadal and Djokovic that good in the recent period to be extremely worrying : they're good but not at their best, and if they're only like that, it's nothing that Fed can't beat if he's at his maximum imo.

That's why my main concern is really Fed's physical shape : talking of several niggles as he did in last weeks is clearly worrying me.

Especially for Wimbledon and the Olympics, his physical shape is decisive.

Does anybody have any kind of news on his niggles and physical shape ?
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Old 05-22-2012, 05:13 PM   #1745
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He told about some problems he had at the start of Rome, but nobody could know more.
And if you noticed at the final in Madrid after the 1st set he asked the help of the phisio and a doctor gave him a medicine.

I hope it's nothing - only need of some days of rest.
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Old 05-23-2012, 05:37 AM   #1746
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Federer: “The dominance surprises me”'


With the French Open, next Sunday, we have the kick-off of a unique summer of tennis. With the Olympic Games, as well as the battle for the lead in the world rankings, the coming weeks will get even more explosive.



Roger Federer is looking forward to the coming months.


Especially for Roger Federer there is a lot at stake. Can he win for the first time since the Australian Open in 2010 another Grand Slam tournament? Will he once again be the number 1? Will the dream of Olympic gold in singles be fulfilled at Wimbledon?

sport.ch was there, with a small group, as Roger Federer looked into the future, drew a conclusion of his clay season so far, spoke about the never-ending dominance of the top four and also revealed how closely he follows the ranking.


Rafael Nadal won in Rome, again a player from the Top 4. Since Robin Söderling’s victory in November 2010 in Paris, the winner of the Masters 1000 tournaments is always named either Federer, Nadal, Djokovic or Murray. Are you surprised by this dominance?

Roger Federer: Yes, very much. I'm surprised in general, how long we have already dominated on top. It is not self-evident that we end-up in semi-finals and finals all the time. Even though we have a bye in the first round of major tournaments, we can get a tough draw. In Rome, I was somewhat spared, in Madrid, however, it was brutal. But again, it always amazes me that another player doesn’t come through now and then.


Why could this be?

It is currently very, very difficult to get into the Top 4, but slightly easier to crack the top 10, because we on top win practically all points. It often happens that a player beats one from the top 4, but then fails the next. Therefore, it is difficult to get to the title.


How big is then the pressure for the top players?

Very big. You do not win, then another of the top four wins - that is, of course brutal. If you are eliminated before the semifinals, it's like a first round defeat.


How much is a player like Robin Soderling, who can upset the big ones now and then, currently missed?

Sure, he is missed. But we have such players at the moment as well: Del Potro is coming back, Nalbandian is playing well again, Hewitt and Roddick in top form can also for sure achieve something. Soderling had what it takes to beat good players and to win tournaments on faster surfaces. He is the only one who has been able to defeat Nadal in Paris. It’s a pity that he is not on the tour at the moment.


You lost in Rome in the semi-final against Novak Djokovic. Even though you have already played so many times against him: Did you get new insights?

No, there are no secrets between us anymore. It was a special situation for me: I played nine matches in a very short time, so I felt something. Djokovic had already been on clay longer and was well prepared. I'm happy with the run I had. Of course it's a pity I lost that game, because a victory always helps. At the same time, however, I'm glad that I've got a few days break.


How long does it take you, each time, to recover after a match?

This varies greatly. After a quick victory like against Seppi, for example, it’s of course easier.


Do you have sleepless nights?

No, I never have those actually, because at some point you have to shut down. During the tournament, it’s easier, it’s more difficult after a tournament victory, when you have so many pictures in your head. But it doesn’t matter whether you fall asleep quickly or not.


The clay season is just about to reach the high point for you, the French Open is coming. What conclusion would you draw from your clay season so far?

It could not have gone better, because I knew I would not win both tournaments (Madrid, Rome, editor's note). I would have signed at the outset for these results. I was expecting that Rafa and Novak would be in the final in Rome. Especially after Madrid, when the two had more time at their disposal to prepare. The fact that I was able to win the title in Madrid soon after a long pause - after we had been playing on hard court - is incredible. I am very happy.


Talking about Madrid. In particular, Nadal and Djokovic have repeatedly expressed strong criticism there. You have kept out of these discussions in large part. Has the experience helped you to better adapt to the special conditions?

Maybe. But I also have reiterated several times that Rafa should have never lost against Verdasco. Then he would still have been the big favorite for the title. It said much for him: We were in Madrid, in Spain, on clay. It may have been slippery or blue, but Rafa is, on this surface, the favorite. He lost out of 100 games maybe three or four. But of course the experience helps in these situations. Maybe I also benefited from the fact that the 1998 conditions, when I came on the tour, were everywhere different. (...) Today, almost anyone can play well anywhere. Sure, we have to adapt, but it's not as crazy as it once was. Maybe they are not used to that, whereas I am.


In the coming months, there is a pile to do with the French Open, Wimbledon, the Olympic games and the U.S. Open. Is it feasible due to the tightly packed schedule that these titles get divided among multiple players?

Yes, maybe. It was already always difficult to win Paris and Wimbledon one after the other. It will not be any different this year. The double Wimbledon and the Olympics would be more logical: Same place, just three weeks apart. Whoever triumphs at Wimbledon will be super motivated at the Olympics. But there, until the final, "Best of Three" will be played - we know how dangerous that can be on grass. A few points can be decisive. The US Open is a little later. We will see then who is in good shape. For me, this was true in the past: When I played well at Wimbledon, I've also played well at the U.S. Open. But it is also quite possible that the titles will be divided among several people. It's hard to imagine that someone is going to win all four big tournaments.


The battle for the No. 1 in the summer will be very exciting. How exactly do you study the ranking?

I do not follow it very closely. I would not even know how many points I currently have. I check this every now and then, but look at it more where, for example, my friend Stan Wawrinka is, because there the players make bigger jumps than we do at the top. I have long stopped to study the ranking on a constant basis.

To become number 1 once again is your big goal. Would it be even more special to take over the top with a Grand Slam victory?

We're talking here about big problems. Quite honestly, it doesn’t matter to me. We'll see how it goes. I've won the World Tour Finals, for me it's a big tournament, which is often forgotten beside the slams. For me, it is equivalent to a Grand Slam tournament. I feel that I am in possession of a major title. It’s a very interesting time at the moment and the ranking is a big issue. I know that I will have a chance up to the US Open. Right now I'm just glad that I'm healthy.


http://sport.ch.sportalsports.com/sp...868300000.html
Thanks to cromar from rf.com for the translation
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Old 05-23-2012, 02:13 PM   #1747
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Old 05-25-2012, 03:31 PM   #1748
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an interesting interview in French :

http://www.lematin.ch/sports/tennis/...story/22898053

he says that taking care with his daughters, he realizes that he still has a child's character

he also says "they're lucky because they are very good daughters" or that he likes "feeling free and not changing personality when he speaks to the media"

About the "Goat debate", he says "we will never know" and "my slams record is fantastic but how long will it hold ?"
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Old 05-25-2012, 05:41 PM   #1749
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Old 06-23-2012, 05:40 PM   #1750
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Some statements from Paul Annacone:



Mark Hodgkinson

Friday, 22 June 2012

Exclusive interview with Roger Federer’s coach, Paul Annacone, who worked with Pete Sampras for eight years.

Annacone that told that The Tennis Space that Sampras would be “very comfortable” if Federer won this Wimbledon to equal Sampras’s record of seven titles at the All England Club: “Both of these guys are pretty solid in their self-image – there isn’t an ego issue. Pete is a fan of excellence.” Annacone also gave an insight into what Federer and Sampras are like away from the courts: “They’re very different. Roger is a citizen of the world, and Pete’s a much more insular person – he was never a gregarious, social animal.”

Has Pete been in contact with you and Roger before this Wimbledon?

“Yes, I know Pete and Roger talked over text message a few days ago, and I talk to Pete pretty regularly over text and telephone. Pete is a fan of excellence. He knows what it takes to be successful at the highest level. Since he and Roger are friends, Pete can really appreciate and enjoy Roger’s success. If Pete is going to share the record with anyone, he would like it to be with Roger. Both of these guys are pretty solid in their self-image. There isn’t an ego issue. If Pete is sharing the record with Roger, he feels very comfortable with that.”

Do you speak with Roger about trying to equal Pete’s record?

“No, I don’t. For me, it’s very easy to get wrapped up in the moment, whatever the moment is. But I’m a big believer in looking at everybody’s complete work over their whole life. Roger’s had such a great set of accomplishments so I really only look at this as something else to add to this. If he’s fortunate enough to get another victory out of this, that would be great. If he tied Pete, that would be exciting for both guys. They’re friends. Their levels are pretty unparalleled. It’s nice to see two good guys who have been so successful. Selfishly, for me, I’ve been very fortunate to have an affiliation with them both.”

Do you feel fortunate to have coached Pete and Roger?

“I feel really lucky to be part of the environment. I’ve worked with great players, Roger and Pete. But, as great as they are on court, they’re better people. For me, that’s why I’m still able to do that. That’s why I’m not totally burnt-out and fried. I’ve had great people to deal with, if you know what I mean? If Roger was a nightmare, I wouldn’t be able to still do it, and same with Pete, I couldn’t have stayed with him for so many years. When you have great players who are better people, that makes for a great working environment. I’ve been very fortunate to be around Pete and Roger.”

How different are Pete and Roger when they’re away from the courts?

“They are very different people. The best way to characterise Roger is a citizen of the world. He adapts to different environments. He enjoys France, he likes it here, he liked it in Halle last week, and he loves to go to Rotterdam and Stockholm. He just embraces the environment he’s in. Pete is a much more insular person. He was always much more comfortable in his own environment. He was much more in tune with what he wanted to accomplish than with being a gregarious, social animal. That wasn’t Pete. Pete was about being the best professional he could be, and accomplishing as much as he could accomplish, and doing it with a lot of integrity, class and hard work. They’s very different. Roger travels with his family and has a lot of friends all over the world, and enjoys his life in a different way. Pete enjoys his life. But they’re different people and they need different things.”

Will Roger be walking around Wimbledon Village?

“Not much, it’s difficult for him to do that. It’s difficult for him to do much of anything. But he gets his time with his family, and they do family things, and they’re genuinely, genuinely, a very happy unit.”

Source: http://www.thetennisspace.com/off-co...ederers-coach/
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Old 06-23-2012, 05:42 PM   #1751
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Mark Hodgkinson

Saturday, 23 June 2012

Exclusive interview with Paul Annacone, Roger Federer’s coach.

Annacone has told The Tennis Space that it does not worry him that Federer has not played in a Wimbledon final for three years: “That’s not a concern for me. Roger’s won Wimbledon six times – it’s not like he doesn’t have the experience of being in the big moment.” Annacone also spoke of his excitement that Federer could leave Wimbledon as the world No 1: “But that’s not a primary motivating factor for Roger.”

Are you at all concerned that Roger has not played in a Wimbledon final for three years, and has lost in the quarter-finals the last two summers?

“That’s not a concern for me. It’s great to have more experience of being there, and winning it six times, it’s not like he hasn’t done it before. He’s been in so many slam finals, semi-finals and quarter-finals. It’s not like he’s lacking the experience of being in the big moment. He’s been there so many times. It would worry me if he hadn’t had good performances in the slams recently. He hasn’t won one for a couple of years now, but he’s been in the semi-finals pretty regularly. He’s been right there knocking on the door, so it’s not exactly unfamiliar territory. I don’t think about that much.”

How are Roger’s preparations going?

“They’re going well. It’s always nice to get some grass-court matches in before you get over here to Wimbledon. Obviously Halle was helpful, getting some matches in and reaching the final, and getting comfortable on the grass. It’s not nice to not win tournaments, especially for Roger, but to get to the final was a terrific way to lead into here. He’s feeling good in body and mind. Now it’s just a matter of waiting for the tournament to start. These last four or five days before Wimbledon starts, there’s not a huge amount of work to be done. If there is, then you’re in trouble. There are just a few little things that we’re working on. It’s mostly just getting comfortable with the courts and the surroundings again.”

Do you notice an Immediate change in Roger’s mood when he walks into the All England Club?

“I used to feel that more when I was working with Pete and Tim. With Tim especially, as he’s from here. But Roger seems to be so embracing of all the environments he’s in. He’s just a very comfortable human being in general. I think that helps. He just accepts the environments that he’s in. He accepts that there are some things he can’t control, and thinks, ‘let’s go play’. That makes life very manageable for me coaching him as just accepts situations and doesn’t waste a lot of emotional energy about things he has no control over.”

Roger could leave Wimbledon as the world No 1?

"That’s exciting. It’s not a primary motivating factor for him. Roger thinks more about the bigger pictures. That’s why great players are great players. They don’t sit there thinking about these things. I’m sure last year Novak didn’t just sit there thinking, ‘okay, okay, I haven’t lost, I’m getting closer to No 1′. They look at the big picture. Roger wants to do well in every tournament he plays in, and there’s a continual process of evaluation. He wants to do well in all the majors. Wimbledon is Wimbledon. There are no two ways around that. This is the absolutely the pinnacle of tennis, and he wants to do really well here. He would love to win, and leave as the No 1, but it’s a long year, and there’s a lot of tennis, but he’s not going to be adding any unneeded pressure. Great players have perspective, and they know it what it is. They just do the best they can with what they have on the day.”

Source: http://www.thetennisspace.com/on-cou...body-and-mind/
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Old 06-24-2012, 02:34 PM   #1752
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Old 06-24-2012, 11:12 PM   #1753
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Q&A: Federer the pied piper of Wimbledon

By Pritha Sarkar, Reuters
Posted at 06/24/2012 9:36 PM | Updated as of 06/24/2012 9:36 PM


LONDON -- Roger Federer has not won a grand slam title for almost 30 months and is no longer the world's top-ranked player, yet when it comes to pulling power he remains the number one attraction at Wimbledon.

The moment the casually dressed 16-times grand slam champion sauntered on to the players' terrace on Saturday he looked like the pied piper of Wimbledon.

His every move was shadowed by dozens of young and old autograph hunters and a host of media representatives.

Even high-profile former players jostled for space in the scrum surrounding Federer, who in two weeks' time could draw level with Pete Sampras and William Renshaw's record of seven men's titles at the All England Club.

Also present on Saturday was the current King of Wimbledon, Novak Djokovic, and Britain's heir apparent, Andy Murray, but they were barely given a second glance by the throng who simply wanted to rub shoulders with a player who has long been dubbed "the ultimate tennis god."

When a young boy adoringly looked up to Federer and said "I want to be as god, sorry, as good as you," the amused Swiss ruffled the fan's hair and asked "How good are you now?."

Once he had satisfied the masses, Federer escaped to an underground bunker at the All England Club to talk to Reuters about playing in the golden era of tennis, his chances of winning his first singles gold medal when Wimbledon hosts the Olympics tennis event next month and about being bestowed honours outside his sport.

REUTERS: A lot of players feel privileged but unlucky that their careers have coincided with this current generation at the top. Do you feel lucky or unlucky to have played in this era?

FEDERER: "Do I feel lucky? I feel lucky that I've had such a wonderful career because I never thought it would be that incredible. But then again would I have had more success than let's say if a (Lleyton) Hewitt, if a Rafa (Nadal), if a Novak (Djokovic), if a (Marat) Safin would not have been around? I don't know.

"I believe then someone else would have been around who would have beaten me as many times. I think the other guys see it the same. If I wouldn't have been around then there would have been another great player like me around. So you just go with it and draw inspiration from those that make you work harder and you try to become the best you can be."

REUTERS: Had Rafa's career not coincided with yours, you probably would have won another four or five French Open titles and your total tally might have been around 23 or more - have you wondered about that?

FEDERER: "Honestly I haven't thought about it too much. I've enjoyed my rivalry with him. Some losses have been tough against him but it makes the victories a bit sweeter as well (especially) when you do beat someone who you have lost many times against. Like for me in the beginning (David) Nalbandian and (Tim) Henman and (Andre) Agassi and Hewitt and so forth.

"If you are able to turn around a win-loss record or if you are able to come out of a tough place and adjust your game and end up beating that person, that's also important for the mind and the player you are."

REUTERS: This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to win at Wimbledon twice in a month. Does that reduce or increase the pressure?

FEDERER: "It takes it away because you get two shots at it. But obviously the Olympics is only every four years so that creates a lot of pressure. I've been there already three times so I think that's going to help me out.

"It's also going to help me out that I've actually won an Olympic gold already in doubles (in 2008). Whereas people think 'you have to win this one and there's a lot of pressure on you'. I see it another way and I'm not just saying this to get pressure off my back. I can handle any pressure really.

"I would think it's an advantage to have two (events at Wimbledon) in the space of a month. I think it's a big advantage for the one who can actually win Wimbledon or the one who can play finals as well as semis. That means they already have so many matches on grass, they know exactly how Wimbledon plays, particularly at the back-end of the tournament.

"Then going into the beginning of the Olympics will be somewhat similar (but also) ... so different. The best of three set tennis early on in the Olympics is going to push the margins and it's going to make it smaller and more difficult to dominate the field."

REUTERS: You will have the opportunity over the next month of playing best of five sets at Wimbledon and then best of three sets at the Olympics. Which do you think will be more to your advantage and why?

FEDERER: "I always think best of five is an advantage for the top players because a spell of two or five bad minutes or a double fault or stupid shot or a bad miss could cost you the match in a best of three set match on grass."

REUTERS: What are your plans for the two to three weeks between Wimbledon and the Olympics?

FEDERER: "I'll take a week's vacation, work hard for a week and then prepare for a week. I will be leaving London for a couple of weeks."

REUTERS: You have had a lot of honours bestowed on you, such as having your image on postage stamps, having a street named after you and being the second most respected person in the world behind Nelson Mandela. Which honour has meant the most?

FEDERER: (Laughing and shaking his head) "They all came as a big surprise to me and they all are presented differently. One you get an email, one you get a phone call and one they want to have a meeting with you. I'm extremely grateful for how I am seen in Switzerland because that's where I am from. When I can be a great ambassador for my country, I feel proud.

"That whole list of being the second most respected person in the world was like ... I don't even want to say it was too good to be true because that's not true. I was like 'what is this list all about? Is this true or is this not true?'

"It was very nice that people actually do believe that I'm genuine, that I'm easy to listen to, they trust what I say, all these things obviously make me very happy. I do try to bring across a good story and a good image for our game so it's nice to get recognition for that. I don't need it but it's obviously nice when you do get it."

REUTERS: Which has been the most bizarre honour or one that has made you laugh?

FEDERER: Ha ha, I guess (being on) all those sexy lists or whatever. GQ magazine - most sexy man of the year. I don't know if I was once but I have been the GQ man of the year. I was like 'yeah right, this is only because I'm playing well, I'm successful and I'm famous'. That's the only reason.

"If you don't take it that way, people are going to remind you that's it's only because of that. Because you don't want to have a balloon head and start flying off."

REUTERS: There have been long periods in your career where you were successful despite not having a coach. What does your coach Paul Annacone bring to the table that a 16-times grand slam champion doesn't already know?

FEDERER: "It's a good question and that's why it's important for me to pick the right people around me right now. I probably do know very much that other people can never know just because I've been out on Centre Court serving for a match for history. I have a lot of experience about those things but ... Severin Luthi, who is the (Swiss) Davis Cup captain, and Paul, they work very closely together and analyse every player and analyse my own game.

"The coaching staff is something I've been able to go without, I've been able to go with just one coach and I've been able to go with two coaches as it is right now. I've always tried to keep it interesting for myself.

"It's important for me that they do criticise me, they do give me advice, they do challenge me. I don't pay a coach just so he's there and says, 'You're doing great and you're the best of all time'. I don't need to hear that on a daily basis."

REUTERS: Do you plan to play on when your twin girls are of a school age? If yes do you know how the travelling plans will work for the family as you have always credited your wife Mirka's presence as being a large part of your success?

FEDERER: "Not yet. Obviously I'd still like to play for many years and I hope that problem will arise. I'm still going to be playing for the next four years and they are just going to turn three next month. So it's exciting times right now on tour with them, it's very active. It's very busy and I'm very thankful to my wife who makes it all work.

"People sometimes underestimate how difficult it actually is to manage the whole situation but we'll see where and how they're going to go to school. We've got to figure it all out. We have ideas and have spoken about it a little bit but we are still far off so don't quite know how it's all going to work out."

REUTERS: Apart from your trophies, your career can also be played out with a montage of you crying: like crying after beating Pete Sampras at Wimbledon in 2001, crying after winning your first Wimbledon or crying after the 2009 Australian Open final defeat to Nadal. How do you feel about that when you look back?

FEDERER: "I'm happy that I did show those emotions. I used to only show emotions when I lost as a kid. Obviously as a junior, you're not going to win a match and cry, you're always going to cry more when you did lose because you're sad, you're upset, you're disappointed. I was always a very emotional person in that regard.

"Then all of a sudden it hit me when I beat Sampras at Wimbledon in 2001 and then when I won the Davis Cup in Switzerland against the Americans in my hometown of Basel. I was like 'what is happening to me? Why am I having so many emotions when I'm winning?' So I guess for me it was normal when I did win Wimbledon and hold the trophy in my hands (I cried). I'm happy I had these moments.

"Some I obviously I wish I didn't cry after losses, like in Australia (after the epic five-set final defeat by Nadal). But I was just so exhausted. When I sat down (at the end) I was actually calm about it but when I got on the podium and saw all the fans so respectful and had to speak, it (the tears) all of a sudden came out.

"But I don't regret any of my outbursts. Some people think it's strange, some people think it's fantastic. I'm happy it all happened to me so that I could savour it and also feel the pain because it's not always that easy out there. It shows that I do care about the sport very dearly."

REUTERS: You own a ton of tennis records. But what do you view as the greatest sporting achievement?

FEDERER: "What I do appreciate a lot is longevity at the highest of levels. Because when I was winning my first Wimbledon and becoming number one for the first time in 2004, I was lucky enough to look up to other athletes that were doing the same thing I was doing but already for multiple years. Such as Tiger Woods, Michael Schumacher, Valentino Rossi.

"So that was inspiring for me to look at other athletes who did something exceptional. I thought, 'oh my god, I don't know how they do it' and the next thing you know you are there as well. So I'm very proud that I've been able to be very consistent at the highest of levels for a very long time because I didn't use to be famous for being consistent at all.

"For a long time people thought that was my big weakness as people thought if you hang in there with Federer, you'll beat him eventually because he will let go. Today I'm famous for it and I think that's thanks to all these great champions out there who inspired me."
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Old 06-25-2012, 11:20 PM   #1755
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From The Telegraph

Wimbledon 2012: Roger Federer here to stay as the Swiss tennis master prepares to claim another grand slam

Roger Federer is 30 but intends to be around for some while yet, good news for his fans but bad news for his rivals.

By Simon Briggs, Tennis Correspondent, Wimbledon11:00PM BST 23 Jun 2012

Thinking of camping out at Wimbledon golf course in the hope of catching a glimpse of Roger Federer before he retires? It is always a pleasure to watch the great man, but there’s no need to panic. Federer says he is already planning his tournament schedule as far ahead as 2014.

This may not be welcome news for his rivals. They are used to seeing him hoover up half-a-dozen titles a year, not to mention the biggest and best endorsements. But Federer’s enduring motivation is a huge boon for tennis.

He isn’t just the greatest player of our time, he is the one with the deepest emotional attachment to the sport.

“It’s logical that I should still be motivated,” Federer told Telegraph Sport. “I am right there, I can relive incredible moments, and I can live my dream. I can play Centre Court in every single tournament, and I have more fans than I ever had.
“I know now what I can do as a player and what I can’t. It’s beautiful because you’re learning every day. And I enjoy my practice more than I ever have.

"I didn’t used to like practice, to be honest. I used to dislike fitness. Even speaking to the press was a case of ‘OK, we’ll just do it.’ But today I take enjoyment from all these little things.”

The Federer who returns to Wimbledon in search of his seventh title is a different man from the one who opened his Grand Slam account here nine years ago.

Today he takes his two-year-old twins, Myla Rose and Charlene Riva, to almost every tournament he plays.

“Last here they came here on the grounds before the tournament started,” he said. “It’s big, spacious and nice, you don’t have to watch for cars. But this year it’s been tough with the weather.”

His extra responsibilities mean that he has to be “super organised”, in his words. On top of his training and his family life, he also has to fit in his role as the president of the Player Council, smoothing over the wrinkles of a highly politicised sport.

With such a list of commitments, it makes sense that Federer should prepare his schedule two years in advance. Yet this is not a new habit, designed to offset the challenges of his mature years.

He has been doing it since early in his relationship with wife Mirka, which dates back to 2000. And all that planning and preparation has underpinned a decade of almost continuous success.

“I go back to 2003, when I won here at Wimbledon and then went on to become world No 1,” said Federer, who will turn 31 in August. “My goal with my wife and my fitness coach Pierre Paganini was that we would plan in the long term. Where are we going to play, how are we going to get there?

"That’s the one thing that keeps me in a good state mentally. I’ve already planned out all of 2013, though I still have to decide on a couple of smaller tournaments. Then towards the middle of the year you start on 2014. It’s always in that kind of cycle.”

Really? All the way to 2014 already?

“Yes. I mean. who knows if I will still be playing. The body will decide eventually. But I would think so because that’s how my planning works. That what makes my life easier on a daily basis.”

Some observers spied a slight hint of weariness about Federer during the French Open, which was probably caused by the introduction of heavier and slower Babolat balls. (What a coincidence that Rafael Nadal, Babolat’s principal client, favours slow conditions).

On Saturday, though, he was positively glowing at the prospect of another crack at Wimbledon.

“I just feel that this surface helps my game a bit more,” he said. “You think ‘Man, if you’ve won here six times you can do it seven.’ That’s just logic, right? But I know how hard it is and I know I will have to raise my game to do it again.”

Tennis lovers should be reassured by Federer’s sheer enthusiasm for at least two more years of tennis. It’s true that he has not have won a Grand Slam since January 2010, when he beat Andy Murray in the Australian Open final.

But he remains one of the most recognisable figures in sport, up there with the Usain Bolts and the David Beckhams, and he will leave a huge hole when he finally retires.

Even those who support his chief rivals, Nadal and Novak Djokovic, cannot fail to appreciate what Federer has achieved.

“I think people feel that I am a genuine guy,” he said, “and that’s an advantage when I walk the streets. I mean, if people don't like you, which is absolutely possible, they just won’t say anything.

"They’re like ‘Ah, I’m with Nadal’, or ‘I’m with another guy,’ and that’s fine. But they won’t come up to you and make you feel bad about it.

“I have had a couple of people come up to me and say ‘Hi, Nadal’s gonna kick your ass next time around.’ And I’m like ‘Oh really, great, thank you.’

"That’s maybe happened to me twice over a 15-year career. So I’m just saying I think tennis fans are very cool and relaxed.”
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