It was April 3, 2005, the date on which Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal gave us a tremendous final, surely unrepeatable. It was the second time they had seen each other and curiously it had also been in Miami, the year before, the place where they met for the first time. On that occasion in the first round, with the Spanish victory, something that he could not repeat twelve months later, in the grand final. The Spaniard began scoring the first two sets of the match, but the Basel one would end up signing one of the great comebacks of his career (2-6, 6-7, 7-6, 6-3, 6-1). After 16 years, only Fabio Fognini and Stefanos Tsitsipas have achieved the feat of lifting the Spaniard from a two-set deficit against. Both Roger Federer and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga have returned to the winner’s circle on the ATP tour a few weeks ago, after enduring a string of physical setbacks over the past year.
Tsonga reflects on Roger Federer’s return
“Beyond the performance, it gives hope to a lot of people,” Jo-Wilfried Tsonga said. “Because I’m sure there are a lot of people watching us, who may be tennis players or not, who may have other injuries, or many other things that are difficult. And it’s good to give people hope,” the Frenchman added. “I think that through Roger Federer’s performance (and mine), we give people hope and that’s great.” Tsonga also empathized with Federer, given that he has himself undergone surgeries on both his knees in the past. “Unbelievable. It’s beautiful,” Tsonga said. “I know what it’s like to have the knees operated on, because I have had both (knees operated). Anyway, I know what it is (laughs). When you’re out for a while (to comeback and win) it’s wonderful,” he added. “It’s Roger Federer too. He plays good tennis. I think it is great.” Tennis professionals hardly ever get the time to stay at home. In fact, Roger Federer had even confessed that he could not spend over three months in Switzerland. However, 2020 brought a drastic change in everyone’s life, and the Swiss maestro welcomed the time off. Roger Federer denied binge-watching movies and series and chose to spend his time off with his family instead. He even explained the difference between his tennis life and life at home. Federer said, “No, I haven’t ‘binged’ that much, neither movies nor series. I was busy becoming the family quarterback. For once. In my tennis life, I make big decisions, and people manage the day-to-day for me. There, I was really happy to pilot details with my wife, to think of things for the children, the garden, the house.”