Roger Federer's storied tennis career has come to a close. At the Laver Cup in London today, he played his final competitive match, teaming up with his longtime friend and rival Rafael Nadal to play doubles for Team Europe.
Federer and Nadal lost in a tiebreak to Team World's American doubles team, Frances Tiafoe and Jack Sock. ("I'm just excited to play two up-and-comers," Tiafoe joked. He added, "It's going to be iconic to be a part of that. Both guys are absolute legends.")
"It's super special playing with Rafa," Federer said in a news conference ahead of the match. "To be able to do that one more time, I'm sure it's going to be wonderful."
Nadal agreed that the match was going to be a "special thing."
"Difficult. Going to be difficult to handle everything, especially for Roger, without a doubt. But for me too. At the end, one of the most important players—if not the most important player—in my tennis career is leaving," he said yesterday.
Federer and Nadal played each other in singles 40 times over the course of their career, including 14 times in Grand Slams. (Nadal leads the series, 24-16.)
Last week, Federer announced his retirement from the sport. "The last 24 years on tour have been an incredible adventure. While it sometimes feels like it went by in 24 hours, it has also been so deep and magical that it seems as if I’ve already lived a full lifetime," he wrote in a note. "When my love of tennis started, I was a ball kid in my hometown of Basel. I used to watch the players with a sense of wonder. They were like giants to me and I began to dream. My dreams led me to work harder and I started to believe in myself. Some success brought me confidence and I was on my way to the most amazing journey that has led to this day."
Federer retires having won 103 ATP tour titles and 20 Grand Slams.
You Might Also Like