Former world number one and twenty-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer, who lost his first round match to Pablo Andujar at the Geneva Open, had decided to stay in Geneva and train harder for the French Open next week. The Swiss was accompanied by Frenchman Gael Monfils for today’s practice session.
The duo had a long practice match, where Elina Svitolina was also present along with Monfils. After she finished the practice session, Svitolina asked Roger to try a challenge that she did a year ago. The tweet, published by Monfils, had the caption: “When your girl is not feeling well on Monday”, where the Ukrainian is seen hitting the French with balls with her racket.
During today’s practice session with Federer, Elina Svitolina encouraged the Swiss master to perform the same maneuver against the French. “I know this is a great opportunity for you, but try to relax your arm and you can do it,” Svitolina said before Federer started hitting the balls at Monfils.
While all the balls the Ukrainian hit last year failed at Monfils, Federer decided to do something different this time. Even though the first two shots missed, the third shot went straight to the Frenchman. While Monfils was down, Svitolina told viewers, “Don’t try this at home.”
Federer laughed and apologized to the Frenchman for the mistake. “Behind the scenes, this one doesn’t count,” added the Swiss teacher. Later, the twenty-time Grand Slam champion posted a tweet inviting Monfils to try this trick again.
“Sorry, Gael Monfils. I’m out of rhythm. We will try again in a few weeks,” wrote the Swiss.
Schett talks about Roger Federer
In a recent interaction with Tennis365, Barbara Schett said Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal have a good chance to eclipse Roger Federer’s record as they continue to be in top physical shape.
“Maybe Roger Federer believes he can win Wimbledon one more time, but that will be tough at his age and having been away from the game for so long,” Schett said. “I would love to see Roger win Wimbledon again,” she added.
“He must believe he can do it or he would not be playing, but he has been out for so long and his body is going to hurt when he plays best of five set matches.” The Austrian also said that the overall Grand Slam tally is an important argument in the GOAT debate and that the player to end up with the most Majors will likely be perceived as the greatest of all time.
“One part of deciding who is the greatest of these three will be, in the end, the Grand Slam titles they win,” Schett added. “I guess that is how they will be judged. They have all played at the same time and at the end of the day, the numbers count.”