In tears, Roger Federer stated goodbye to tennis in London

Historical past is not going to keep in mind the 1750 consequenceto me eti Roger Federer’s last professional gamehowever the pictures aren’t going away any time quickly. Beginning with these lengthy minutes when Large Ben struck midnight on Friday, September 23, we noticed the Swiss share infinite sobs with Rafael Nadal sitting by his facet.

After 1 / 4 of a century on the observe, the grasp of ceremonies envisioned the right solid because the grand finale in London: to play the ultimate double in opposition to the Spaniard, eighteen years after the primary of their 40 face-to-face matches. For the decor? “His” Laver Cup, an exhibition he launched in 2017 much like the Ryder Cup in golf, the place for 3 days one of the best European gamers problem not solely the Individuals, however “the remainder of the world”.

Additionally learn: “Roger Federer was a gamer with an elegance that I have probably never seen before. It will leave an indelible mark on the history of tennis.

Like Björn Borg and John McEnroe, the 2 competitors captains, the stylistic distinction between right-handed and left-handed gamers will go down within the historical past of the sport. The class, “innate” expertise (at the least in look) and the coolness of blood labored for Federer. Nadal’s present of power throughout biceps, tireless work and nerves.

Two rivals to grow to be «Ami» who find yourself as teammates, the conclusion was wonderful, in addition to a advertising and marketing coup. For 2 days, bromination was skillfully staged, two gamers multiplied candy phrases and understanding smiles in entrance of lenses and cameras. “He would be the boss on Friday”he had warned the Swiss the day earlier than. “One of many gamers, if not a very powerful participant in my profession”, The Mallorcan flattered him in return. At daybreak on Saturday, the eyes of the youngest (36) have been nonetheless purple: “Being a part of this historic second for our sport was troublesome and emotional. Roger is leaving the observe, a lot of my life is evaporating. »

On the evening of his anniversary, Roger Federer now not had his solo legs, however at 41, the icon confirmed that he nonetheless had some magic in his racket. Like that surgical forehand whose ball went by way of a mouse gap, piercing the top of the web.

“I’m happy, not sad, thank you”

Regardless of the loss to American pair Jack Sock-Frances Tiafoe, the most important thing on Friday was elsewhere. “It was a great trip, if I had to do it again, I would do everything exactly the same, I’m happy, not sad, thank you.” managed to articulate the hero of the evening between two hiccups, in front of his whole united clan, a few glorious elders (Rod Laver, Stefan Edberg, Jim Courier …), his main rivals and 17,500 fans in the O2 tear-winning collective effusion.

Roger Federer triumphed after his last official match at the O2 Arena in London on September 23, 2022.

A playful Providence who sees a great story collides with a small story. Britain buried its queen on Monday; on Friday, the tennis world said goodbye to its king.

Goodbyes that Roger Federer did not want to take on the appearance of a “funeral.” On the contrary, former world number 1 imagined it as a moment “festive”, not really celebrated in the strictest of intimacy. Enjoyed in“With Björn Borg on the bench with all the guys next to him. I’ve always been sad watching players retire, you lose 90% of the time and you’re on your own. ” said Wednesday at a press conference.

During training on Thursday afternoon, the audience felt as if they had jumped into a time machine when the members of the “Big Four”, a nickname that appeared in the late 2000s, appeared on the court to qualify for gluttony. Federer and Nadal on one side, Serb Novak Djokovic and Brit Andy Murray on the other, sharing 66 Grand Slam titles. Even if the invited 3,000 British schoolchildren only shouted about «Roger, Roger, Roger».

Also read (2019): Roger Federer, or the story of the “centenarian” of tennis

Reminiscence of an idol

Within the official Laver Cup retailer, on the entrance to the stadium, on Friday, the road was at all times full to carry – in any respect prices – actually – a memento of the idol. “Individuals are able to spend some huge cash, we had a fan who purchased 40 caps, says Kula, one of many overseers. It’s fairly surreal, however on the similar time very thrilling to say that we’re a part of this historic second. »

Three bundles below his arm and a navy blue cap with the “RF” brand on his head, Riku Takagi comes out of the shop exempt from £ 350 (round 390 euros) however with a great deal of t-shirts, towels and one other sweatshirt. The 21-year-old Japanese, a “Rodgeur” ​​fan from the age of 10, got here particularly from Tokyo the day earlier than. In Could, he paid 2,500 euros for tickets for 3 days. “These are reminiscences that can dwell ceaselessly” justifies.

Within the sq., the identical morning, the fan zone was largely invested regardless of the embittered climate, consistent with the temper of the day among the many followers within the first hour. Did you miss the final efficiency of the “grasp”? The concept was unthinkable for Gabriela Butler from Ittenthal (Switzerland), a purple and white sweatshirt and matching RF earrings. At his facet, Renée Vorpel and Tani Christians, respectively from Rotterdam (The Netherlands) and Antwerp (Belgium), every of over 100 matches as spectators on the clock.

These three members of the self-proclaimed fans4roger “Official fan membership” Switzerland, they are saying to one another “numb” ever since they came upon about their grasp’s resolution. “We anticipated this given his age, however it’s nonetheless a shock; final evening once we met we cried all night “ says Tani. “He was each on and off the pitch with type, spontaneous, filled with humor”, remembers Gabriela. “Once you met him, he gave you the impression that you simply actually mattered to him” provides Renée, who hoped for a closing dance at Wimbledon.

Additionally learn Article reserved for our subscribers Roger Federer, the tennis legend at the end of a huge career

Exit the entrance door

The primary stakeholder additionally dreamed of going out the entrance door, the ultimate look on “his” blessed garden, the place he triumphed eight occasions. Or saying goodbye at residence in Basel, his hometown (he gained the event ten occasions, 103to me and final profession title).

For a very long time he believed that he could be able to the ultimate “return”. At Wimbledon in early July, the impeccable brushing of fits and ties acquired the loudest ovation among the many legends that got here to have a good time the centenary of the Central Court docket. “I stated on the pitch I hope to come back again once more and I used to be sincere, stated this week. However ten days later the knee was nonetheless on the similar stage, I noticed no additional progress. » The scanner handed shortly after the dying bell rang. “There I stated to myself: OK, I understood. This time it is over. »

Additionally learn Article reserved for our subscribers Roger Federer retires: a skillfully crafted icon behind the player

The web page within the historical past of tennis was turned over on Friday. However the younger retiree has already made an appointment together with his followers, be it for future present tournaments or as an excellent visitor of the Grand Slam. He made a promise: “I can’t be a ghost like Björn Borg. »

Leave a Comment