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Federer: If You’re Not Competitive, Then It’s Better to Stop

Roger Federer of Switzerland greets the audience during the Centre Court Centenary Celebration during day seven of The Championships Wimbledon 2022 at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on July 03, 2022 in London, England. (Photo by Shi Tang/Getty Images)

Roger Federer loves tennis, but doesn’t need it to be happy.

The 20-time Grand Slam champion dropped hints on his competitive future in a new interview with Dutch newspaper Algemeen Dagblad.

The Swiss superstar suggested he’s at peace if he’s unable to continue playing. “I don’t think I need the tennis,” Federer said.

“I am a winner lover, but if you’re not competitive any more, then it’s better to stop,” Federer said. “I don’t think I need the tennis. I am happy with the little things, like when my son does something right and when my daughter comes home with a good grade.

“Tennis is part of, but not my entire identity. I want to be and remain successful and put a lot of energy into business – probably give more than I should sometimes, but that can also be done outside of sports. I know a professional career can’t last forever and that’s okay.”

Federer, who celebrates his 41st birthday on August 8th, thrilled fans at Wimbledon’s Centre Court centenary celebration saying he’d like to return to play again. 

“It feels awkward to be here today in a different type of role, but it’s great to be here, like Novak said, with all the other champions,” the Swiss said. “This court has given me my biggest wins and my biggest losses.”

Federer cited his changing of the guard victory over Pete Sampras in 2001 and his first title in 2003 as his best Wimbledon memories. How did Federer sum up his Centre Court memories?

“Just tried to be successful here and to represent the sport well,” he said. “I hope I did that, and I hope I can come back, one more time.”