Federer Will Miss US Open, Out Indefinitely

Roger Federer (photo: Eva Matan)

WASHINGTON, August 16, 2021 (by Michael Dickens)

Roger Federer will miss this month’s US Open because he needs a third operation on his right knee, which will sideline him for what he said will be “many months.”

The 20-time major champion made the announcement via Instagram with an upbeat, 90-second video message to his fans on Sunday, saying he hopes to give himself “a glimmer of hope” of returning to the ATP Tour and competing.

“I’ve been doing a lot of checks with the doctors as well on my knee, getting all the information as I hurt myself further during the grass-court season and Wimbledon. That’s just not the way to go forward, so unfortunately they told me for the medium to long term to feel better, I will need surgery. I decided to do it,” Federer said in his video.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Roger Federer (@rogerfederer)

Federer, who turned 40 last week, has been sidelined since losing in the Wimbledon quarterfinals to Hubert Hurkacz last month. Since then, the Swiss superstar has missed the Tokyo Olympics as well as back-to-back ATP Masters 1000 events in Toronto and Cincinnati.

This season, Federer has been limited to playing in just five tournaments – Doha, Geneva, Roland Garros, Halle and Wimbledon – compiling a 9-5 win-loss record. He is currently ranked ninth in the FedEx ATP Rankings. He missed more than a year after initially having his knee repaired after the 2020 Australian Open. Then, he had a follow-up procedure in June of last year and shut down for the remainder of the season.

Federer is currently tied with Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic for the most Grand Slam singles titles in men’s tennis history. He won his last major at the 2018 Australian Open.

Osaka will donate her Cincinnati prize money to Haiti relief

Reigning US Open and Australian Open champion Naomi Osaka has promised to donate her earnings from this week’s Western & Southern Open in Mason, Ohio, near Cincinnati, to help earthquake relief efforts in Haiti, the country her father is from.

On Saturday, more than 1,300 people were killed when Haiti was struck by a 7.2 -magnitude earthquake, with the death toll still rising.

“Really hurts to see all the devastation that’s going on in Haiti, and I feel like we really can’t catch a break,” the World No. 2 Osaka wrote on Twitter Saturday. “I’m about to play a tournament this week and I’ll give all the prize money to relief efforts for Haiti. I know our ancestors’ blood is strong we’ll keep rising.”

Osaka added a prayer-hands emoji, heart and the Haitian flag at the conclusion of her tweet.

First-prize money at the Western & Southern Open is worth $255,220 and the runner-up will receive $188,945.

Drawing attention to causes such as social justice and mental health is nothing new for Osaka, a four-time Grand Slam champion. At last year’s US Open, she used the masks she wore that were necessitated by the coronavirus pandemic to bring attention to the Black men and women who were victims of racist violence. Then, earlier this year, she brought attention to mental health issues by announcing she would skip mandatory press conference interviews at the French Open despite the risk of fine because of their detrimental affect on her mental health. She withdrew from the tournament after winning her first-round match, then skipped Wimbledon to be with family and friends.

The Western & Southern Open is Osaka’s first competition since representing Japan in the recent Tokyo Olympics.

Giorgi turning heads on and off the court

Italy’s Camila Giorgi was moved to tears after garnering the biggest title of career, at the Omnium Banque Nationale in Montreal Sunday afternoon. Her 6-3, 7-5 win over No. 4 seed Karolina Pliskova of the Czech Republic in an hour and 40 minutes was her first 1000-level crown and third WTA title overall.

The 71st-ranked Giorgi, who jumped to No. 34 with her title victory, played inspired tennis all week long, beating a number of seeded opponents along the way, including: No. 9 Elise Mertens, No. 7 Petra Kvitova, and No. 15 Coco Gauff before taking down Pliskova.

Giorgi has had Pliskova’s number all season. First, she beat the Czech star 2-6, 6-2, 6-2 in the first round of Eastbourne in June, then backed it up with a 6-4, 6-2 win in the third round of the Tokyo Olympics. Sunday’s take down was Pliskova’s third defeat in a final this season following title losses to Iga Swiatek in Rome and Ashleigh Barty at Wimbledon.

In what has been a summer of sporting triumphs for Italy – in football at the Euro Cup, in track and field at the Olympic Games and now tennis in Montreal – the Italians can’t stop winning. And yet, for Giorgi tennis is not a means to an end for her.

“When I’m off the court, I like to do other things,” she said in press after her title victory against Pliskova. “For example, my mom [has] a brand, Giomila, the one I’m wearing all the time, of course. And I love fashion. This is for me.

“When I’m in the court, in the tournament, very focused. I do my physical, everything. When I go home, there is other things in life, too. The beautiful thing that I think to be a woman, that you can wear things, just colors, different kind of dresses. This is I think even life.”

Newly-formed as a team, Dabrowski and Stefani win Montreal doubles

Gabriela Dabrowski of Canada, a native of Ottawa, and Olympic bronze medalist Luisa Stefani of Brazil, newly formed as a doubles team, won the Omnium Banque Nationale doubles title in Montreal Sunday evening.

Dabrowski and Stefani, playing in just their third tournament together, defeated Darija Jurak of Croatia and Andreja Klepac of Slovenia, 6-3, 6-4, to win the WTA 1000-level event title. The victory avenged their loss to the same team in the San Jose final a week ago. They are now 8-1 in two tournaments this season.

“I think we went into the match technically a lot smarter because of how it went last week,” Stefani said, quoted by the WTA website. “We built on things from last week. From the whole tournament, I think every match here we kept improving and keep focused on what we had to do. I think that paid off at the end.”

Stefani, who recently won an Olympic bronze medal for Brazil in women’s doubles with Laura Pigossi, began the season alongside longtime doubles partner Hayley Carter of the United States. They played 13 tournaments together. However, Carter injured her foot, then took a coaching job at Vanderbilt Univesity in Nashville, Tenn., which meant Stefani needed a new playing partner.

“Luisa, thank you so much for being my partner,” Dabrowski said during the trophy ceremony. “I’m having so much fun on the court with you. Honestly, I hope that we can continue. Great results are awesome but building something together is so beautiful. I love playing doubles with you so thank you for partnering with me.”