Roger Federer admitted that he had been proved wrong after expecting a “lull” in men’s tennis. The 42-year-old questioned whether there would be a difficult period following his retirement coupled with Rafael Nadal’s injury hiatus. But Federer said legends like Novak Djokovic and new stars like Carlos Alcaraz kept things exciting – even though he “just missed” out on facing the young guys.
Federer officially retired from tennis a year ago after spending the better part of two years battling with a knee injury. In his absence, the sport has started moving away from the Big Three era with Nadal also sidelined this season and Djokovic left to carry the torch alone.
But the 20-time Major winner has been pleasantly surprised by the state of men’s tennis since hanging up his racket, mostly thanks to his old rival as well as some of the new stars he never got to play against.
“On the men’s side we have some great, great moments with Novak rewriting history, Alcaraz winning Wimbledon,” the Swiss star told Eurosport. “I mean, I think [Daniil] Medvedev played fantastic again in New York.”
Turning his attention to the new generation of Alcaraz, Holger Rune and Jannik Sinner, the former world No 1 thought that the sport was in good hands. He continued: “Young guys coming through as well. A generation that I didn’t play at all actually. Rune, Sinner, Alcaraz, unfortunately I missed them, you know, playing against them. But I think the future looks bright.”
Explaining why he expected a potential dip in the amount of storylines happening in the sport, Federer added: “I just like how it’s actually not in a lull. I thought sometimes, you know, it goes through these phases when somebody retires like myself or Rafa not playing that maybe things are a little bit like, ‘Oh, it’s not so cool.’ Of course, our fans are thinking that but overall I think actually always great stories rewritten.”