Roger Federer will miss Australian Open
Roger Federer will not play in the 2021 Australian Open, his agent said on Sunday.
“Roger has decided not to play the 2021 Australian Open. He has made strong progress in the last couple of months with his knee and his fitness. However, after consultation with his team, he decided that the best decision for him in the long run is to return to competitive tennis after the Australian Open.” – Tony Godsick, Associated Press
Federer has not played since losing to eventual champion Novak Djokovic in the semi-finals of the 2020 Australian Open at the start of this year, having twice undergone knee surgery since that tournament.
The 39-year-old Swiss superstar will not travel to Melbourne for the rescheduled 2021 Australian Open, which will take place from February 8-21.
“I will start discussions this coming week for tournaments that begin in late February and then start to build a schedule for the rest of the year”, Tony Godsick said.
Federer is a six-time winner of the Australian Open (2004, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2017, 2018). Ranked fifth on the ATP Tour, Federer had a 5-1 win-loss record before his 2020 campaign was cut short.
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Tennis Australia confirmed the news on Monday.
“In the end Roger ran out of time to get himself ready for the rigours of a Grand Slam and he’s very disappointed he won’t be coming to Melbourne in 2021.
“The Australian Open has always held a special place in his heart – remember it was Roger who first called the AO the ‘happy slam’.
“We wish him all the best as he prepares for his comeback later in the year and look forward to seeing him in Melbourne in 2022.” – Craig Tiley, ausopen.com
Tiley had earlier suggested that the Australian Open’s move from its mid-January start date to a Feb 8-21 slot, because of the Coronavirus pandemic, might have allowed Federer to make it but the Swiss always said it was “a race against time”.
And the 20-times Grand Slam champion, who has already said Wimbledon and the Olympics are his priority in 2021, is now likely to begin his campaign somewhere in Europe or the United States in late February/early March.