Roger Federer’s farewell showed hints of his talent, but it couldn’t be perfect. The Swiss, in pairs with the Spanish Rafael Nadal, lost in his last professional match against the Americans Jack Sock and Frances Tiafoe 4-6, 7-6 (7-2) and 11-9 in the Laver Cup, the tournament for teams you chose to retire.
Federer put an end to a 24-year career in which he won 20 Grand Slam titles, 103 tournaments, 310 weeks as number one and, above all, one of the most elegant and colorful styles of games in history.
Federer, accompanied by his family and escorted by his friend Nadal, put the finishing touch to his sporting career in the city where he was crowned with eight Wimbledons, more than any other man in history. Flashes of his undeniable quality were seen for the Swiss, but mobility problems, a product of the last three knee operations that forced his retirement, were evident in several passages of the match.
The defeat of the ‘Fedal’ couple left Europe tied at two after the dispute on the first day of competition in the Laver Cup. One of the points for the European team was achieved by the Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas, who won 6-2 and 6- 1 to Diego Schwartzman in one hour and 16 minutes of play.
After the match and still on the court, Federer assured that he is living this stage without sadness, that he feels happy. “We’ve managed to get through this somehow,” Federer said at the courtside, joined by Jim Courier, a former world number one turned television presenter.
“It’s been a wonderful day. I’m happy, not sad. I’ve enjoyed putting my shoes on one last time. I’ve had my friends here, my family, teammates… I’m very happy to have played the game,” added the Helvetian, who did not stop crying throughout the farewell ceremony. “I never would have expected all this. I just wanted to play tennis. It was perfect, I would do it again. My final was how I wanted it.”