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Roger Federer Talks Uncertain Future and How He Feels at 40

“This week I’m still meeting my doctors and my team and then we’ll see how it should go on. At the moment, everything is still a little uncertain,” Roger Federer told Blick in a new interview. EPA-EFE/NEIL HALL

Throughout his glorious career, Roger Federer has shown the skills to calm chaos.

These days, the 20-time Grand Slam champion is adapting to uncertainty.

Federer, who celebrated his 40th birthday on August 8th, conducted a wide-ranging interview with Blick discussing his feelings on turning 40 and coping with a cranky knee after a pair of surgeries. Federer has not played since his Wimbledon quarterfinal exit and isn’t sure when he will return.

Read Federer’s full interview with Blick here.

“I haven’t done anything for a while, because of the knee,” Federer told Blick. “I had to let everything sink in after Wimbledon. This week I’m still meeting my doctors and my team and then we’ll see how it should go on. At the moment, everything is still a little uncertain.”

In the aftermath of his Wimbledon exit five weeks ago, Federer said he’s contemplated several questions about his competitive career.

“It’s difficult. It used to be different,” Federer told Blick. “The questions were simple: What is my ranking? What is my next tournament?

“Today it’s trickier: How would I feel if I started training again? What can I achieve? What are my goals? How do I reconcile everything with the family? What does the rest of the team say? Today I am much more attentive than before, the attitude is different. It’s really completely different than it was ten years ago.”

Roger Federer has not played since bowing to Hubert Hurkacz of Poland in the Wimbledon quarterfinals. EPA-EFE/NEIL HALL

Ongoing knee issues forced Federer to step out of the Tokyo Olympics, Toronto and Cincinnati prompting both patience and perspective in his comeback process.

“You need more time for everything. If you used to have a blocked back, then it went on for two days and everything was fine again,” Federer said. “Today it may be that it goes two weeks. You are more patient with the pain you have, with yourself, with returning to the court.

“At the same time, however, the joy of what has been achieved comes back. In the past, you took tournament victories for granted, but today you know what’s behind them.”

Reflecting on his 40th birthday celebration spent with wife Mirka, the couple’s four children, his parents, Robert and Lynette, and friends, Federer said hitting the milestone mark sparked gratitude and optimism as he considers his next steps.

“It’s like boxing. You have a lot fewer fights,” Federer said. “Therefore, the focus on a single tournament is much greater. I had to learn that again. You have to adapt. It’s always been that way in my career. The factors change: the degree of awareness, the successes, the experiences…

“I’m a quiet guy who takes things with a sense of humor. I always see the good in every situation. I’m doing very well, my family is healthy. I have just turned forty and I am still active. Who would have thought so? Not me. I’m totally at peace with myself and I’m sure a lot more beautiful things will come.”