Roger Federer: "I'm much more relaxed on the Tour"

With age comes experience, and with experience, Roger Federer has found enjoyment travelling the ATP World Tour.

The 32-year-old Swiss, who will contest the singles and doubles semi-finals Saturday at the Gerry Weber Open in Halle, reflected on the different stages of his career when asked whether he’d come to the phase of his life where he really enjoyed playing tournaments.

“You have enough money, all titles…?” the reporter prefaced.

“Enough children, right?” Federer responded, with a laugh.

“No, it really is the case that you see things much more relaxed. That's normal,” said Federer, as he elaborated on the transition from wide-eyed rookie to seasoned champion.

“It is a very cool period at the beginning when you start playing the players you know from the TV. It’s a very special phase for a player.

“Then you need to hold your ground. That’s also cool because you win a lot but you're up to your ears with work. You also need to say, ‘No, can't be everywhere,’ a photo shoot here and there somebody needs you for a cover shoot and you can't say ‘No’ again. So, it's a bit of both.

“And later you know there are others who will do that and you can concentrate on playing tennis again; of course also on the family.”

Federer made his Gerry Weber Open debut 14 years ago as a promising teenager. On his 12th appearance this week, Federer returns as a winner of 78 titles - including six in Halle - and family man, joined by his wife and four young children.

“I know everything so well now,” he said. “Wherever I go I'm a returning guest. That's also nice that everybody knows me. Over the years, I was able to make friends, which wasn't the case at the beginning.

“I went to New York for the first time only travelling with my coach, that's it. And later you're happy to get 20 or 30 tickets so your friends, pals or colleagues travelling with you or who have moved to New York in the meantime can come and watch you play.

“Things have changed tremendously. Therefore, I'm much more relaxed because I know my way on the Tour, know all the players. There are hardly any new things, which is exciting at the beginning but also a bit stressful.”

Date: 13th June 2014, Source: ATP


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