STUTTGART, June 12, 2017
After a first practice session on Stuttgart’s centre court on Sunday, World No. 5 Roger Federer will return to competitive action on Wednesday, facing the winner of the first round of the encounter between Tommy Haas and Pierre-Hugues Herbert to start his MercedesCup campaign.
On Monday, the top seed of the ATP 250 grass court event met the media and talked about his motivation to get back to the tour after he had skipped the entire clay court season. The 35-year-old Swiss took a two-month hiatus from the sport after defeating Rafael Nadal in the final of the Miami Open to clinch his third title of the season.
“Finally I can play matches again. I did a lot of practice in the last couple of weeks and I am really looking forward to compete in a tournament again. I like the feeling of success, meeting people, traveling the world and playing in front of the fans. To experience new cultures and playing on different center courts, too. I feel it as a great privilege to do it with my family and with a great team. That’s why I like tennis so much,” Federer told and added that he was not watching so much of the sport recently.
“When you are having a break, your body regenerates and you are eager to return to the courts. On Sunday, however, I would have been without any chance against Rafa in Paris. I had told before that Rafa will dominate the clay court season. I feel sorry for Stan but Rafa’s performance was gigantic. However, to be honest, I didn’t follow too much tennis on TV. When I am not on court, I mostly check live scores or the results.”
Feder also explained his decision to focos on the grass swing in 2017.
“My big goal for the season is Wimbledon. That’s what I set at the beginning of the year. Rafa’s title in Paris hasn’t changed anything about it. This was his big goal and it was good to see that you can achieve it. On the other hand, it will not be an advantage for me that he will come to Wimbledon full of confidence,” Federer laughed.
Next up for the Swiss Maestro will be the mission MercedesCup. Federer lost here in last year’s semi-final to Dominic Thiem and wants to clinch the title this time.
“This tournament here has a soul, as it takes places in a club. The atmosphere is very special and it is also not far away from Switzerland. I came by car and it was also nice to drive on the German Autobahn again. People are friendly and everything is organized very well. I am in a good physical condition, better than last year. So I am looking forward to the week!”