Roger Federer set for emotional farewell to tennis at Laver Cup | Tennis News

LONDON: Roger Federer will lift the curtain on his spectacular career in a ‘super special’ doubles match alongside longtime rival Rafael Nadal at the Cup of the tank in London on Friday.
The 20-time Grand Slam champion with a knee injury has not played since the 2021 Wimbledon quarter-finals and announced his retirement at the age of 41 last week.
But he will appear for Team Europe for one last time at the Laver Cup, joining Nadal in a dream duo against Team World’s Frances Tiafoe and Jack Sock at the O2 Arena.

The Swiss great enjoyed a historic rivalry with the Spaniard for nearly two decades and together they won 42 Grand Slam singles titles in a golden era for the men’s game.
The pair have played 40 times, including nine Grand Slam finals, with Nadal holding a winning record of 24-16, but this time they will be on the same side of the net in the Ryder Cup-style event.
Europe’s six-man squad also includes Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray – the other two members of the so-called ‘Big Four’ – in a fitting highlight to Federer’s career.
Italian Matteo Berrettini will take Federer’s place for the final two days of the three-day tournament.

“Of course it’s super special to play with Rafa,” Federer said during a busy press conference on Thursday. “It’s really different, you know.
“Also, just getting out on the pitch and having the chance to play with Rafa or Novak also in the past has been an amazing experience for me.
“So to be able to do this one more time, I’m sure it’s going to be wonderful. I’ll do my best. I hope to be good there, and of course I’m going to enjoy it but it will be difficult.”
Nadal, who first played Federer on the ATP Tour in 2004, said he was looking forward to an “unforgettable” match alongside the Swiss.

“After all the incredible things we shared together on and off the court, being part of this historic moment is going to be something incredible, something unforgettable for me,” said the 36-year-old, who won a record 22 Grand Slam singles titles. at men’s tennis.
World team captain John McEnroe said Federer’s retirement would leave “a void that will never be filled”.
“It’s amazing what he and the other two guys (Djokovic and Nadal) have done,” he said. “He doesn’t need my advice. He’s in a great position. He’s a total class act.
“We all know that. He loves the sport. That’s part of why he’s won so much, in my book. He loves it. I hope he, and I believe he will be around her d ‘one way or another. form.”

American great Pete Sampras, whose record Federer surpassed 14 Grand Slam singles titles in 2009, paid a warm tribute to the Swiss, remembering their one and only meeting in 2001.
“We had a great battle on center court at Wimbledon and you beat me in a tough five set match and I just remember walking off the court feeling like I met my match,” he said in a video posted on social media. .
“Truly a special player. I didn’t know 20 years later that you would have 20 majors, that you would have been number one for years, that you would have dominated our sport, that you would have done it all.”

Norway’s Casper Ruud takes on Sock in the Laver Cup opener on Friday before Greece’s Stefanos Tsitsipas meets Argentina’s Diego Schwartzman in the second singles match.
Murray, making his Laver Cup debut, will face Australia’s Alex de Minaur early in the night session before Federer and Nadal take to the pitch.

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