At 41 and after more than 1500 games played, Roger Federer has decided to hang up his racket. He will do so at the end of the Laver Cup, the exhibition he founded, which will take place at the O2 Arena in London from 23 to 25 September.
It is not yet clear whether the Swiss will play singles or doubles, but he will do everything possible to take the field. Although it was not a bolt from the blue, the King's announcement sparked a myriad of reactions in the corner of the world.
Everyone sent messages to pay tribute to one of the greatest athletes of all time. The former ATP number 1 has suffered a lot over the past two and a half years, not being able to play as and as much as he would have liked due to a severe right knee injury.
The Master from Basel underwent three surgeries, but Father Tempo got the better of it this time. In a long interview granted to the 'Blick' newspaper, Pierre Paganini illustrated the reasons that led Federer to retire.
"Roger Federer's spontaneity. You only meet someone like him once. You can put anyone on this planet in front of him, Federer will genuinely care about him and make him comfortable. He is honest, sincere, and curious.
Roger is always 100 percent pure," he said. When asked if Federer made the right decision to retire, Paganini said it wasn't for him to judge. But when pushed, he opined that it was a "smart decision." "It's not my place to judge.
I was one of his coaches for 22 years, an incredible privilege. I am fortunate to have worked with this extraordinary athlete and person. But if you ask me for my assessment: I think it's a smart decision," he added.
"That's why I think this decision is so wise," he said. "You can retire from the ATP Tour, but maybe you still want to live out your passion for tennis. Roger's resignation is also a relief for me. We don't want him to get injured again and then have physical problems in his future.
In top-class sport you have to go to the limits in training – but you also have to be able to decide when it's too much. Since July, when he started combining the different training elements, he noticed that he had to make more and more detours and put in extra effort. He had to make greater efforts for relatively low intensity."