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Roger Federer to Undergo Knee Surgery, Will Be Out “Many Months”

Roger Federer will undergo his third knee surgery since 2020, miss the US Open and likely the rest of the season. EPA-EFE/SASCHA STEINBACH

Impending right knee surgery has knocked Roger Federer out of the US Open — and will likely close the curtain on his 2021 season.

The 40-year-old Swiss superstar announced he will undergo his third knee surgery since the start of 2020 forcing him out of this month’s US Open and sidelining him for “many months.”

“Unfortunately they told me for the medium to long term to feel better I will need surgery,” Federer said in a video posted to Instagram. “I have to do it.”

The 20-time Grand Slam champion said his top priority is to ensure his long-term health. Following surgery, Federer said he expects to be on crutches for many weeks and out of the game for “many months.”

“It’s gonna be difficult in some ways, but at the same time, I know it’s the right thing to do,” Federer said. “Because I want to be healthy. I want to be running around later as well again.

“And I want to give myself a glimmer of hope to return to the tour in some shape or form. I am realistic don’t get me wrong I know how difficult it is at this age to do another surgery and try it. Look, I want to be healthy. I’ll go with the rehab process with a goal while I’m still active, which I think is going to help me during this long period of time.”

Since his Wimbledon quarterfinal loss to Hubert Hurkacz, Federer withdrew from the Tokyo Olympics, Toronto and Cincinnati due to lingering knee issues.

Federer played just five tournaments in 2021 posting a 9-4 record. He’s contested six tournaments total, including two on hard courts, over the last two years.F ederer said ongoing knee issues have prompted 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 in an interview with Blick published last week. “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 his milestone birthday sparked gratitude and optimism.

“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.”