Federer fired up over quit talk
Roger Federer has dealt a forehand smash to critics who constantly question his future, insisting he had no plans to hang up his racquet any time soon.
The 16-time Grand Slam champion turned 30 last August, but since his heartbreaking US Open semi-final defeat to Novak Djokovic Federer has wound back the clock to his glory days, winning an astonishing six titles including a record fifth Indian Wells crown on Sunday.
Federer, though, still hasn’t won a major trophy in more than two years and has frequently been forced to shrug off claims the sun is setting on his illustrious career.
And the Swiss maestro revealed the ongoing speculation over his future was beginning to take its toll.
“It was a bit like being pinched all the time,” Federer said. “You know how it was, ‘Am I going to quit?’ I know I come to different places all year and each event wants their answer, but sometimes it came from those who know me and after I lose a big match it’s like, ‘Come On!’.
“I’m not afraid of playing and taking losses, but then you get a double whammy from the press. I don’t like it when the fans start believing that this is the way it is.”
A fired-up Federer also took a swipe at Andy Murray’s detractors, urging them not to be so obsessed over his failure to win a Grand Slam.
The stroppy Scot reached the semi-final stage or better of all four majors last year, but his so-far unsuccessful quest to break through at one of the ‘big four’ remains the hot topic of discussion.
And Federer said: “People want their extremes. Remember Murray winning back-to-back tournaments last year and he played super-consistent in the Slams and had chances, and people don’t talk about that.
“Nadal had a great year – he won a Slam and was in eight finals, and that could be a world No.1 year, but it isn’t when you have a guy like Novak [Djokovic] around.
“So that’s why it it’s important to have perspective and realise where each player is coming from, because sometimes a guy is on a hot streak and he’s just tough to beat.”