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"Am afraid that in 3-4 years Federer will be retired" - Jannik Sinner on why he wants to play the Swiss before Djokovic

Jannik Sinner
Jannik Sinner
Modified 15 Dec 2020

Given a choice, Jannik Sinner would rather face 20-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer first than Novak Djokovic - since the Italian believes Federer is close to retirement.

The youngest player in the top 100 at No. 37, Jannik Sinner is considered by many to be a superstar in the making. The Italian has already faced one member of the Big 3 - Rafael Nadal - losing to the Spaniard in the French Open quarterfinals earlier this year.

In a recent interview, Jannik Sinner was asked which of the other members of the Big 3 he wants to face next - Novak Djokovic or Roger Federer. The 19-year-old was quick with his reply, while also pointing out that Federer is his 'idol'.

"Maybe Roger Federer because he is my idol and because I'm afraid that in three or four years he will be retired, even though it would be nice if he never stopped," Jannik Sinner said.

Roger Federer is 39 years old, and hasn't played since undergoing double knee surgery this year. He is slated to make a comeback next season, although in his recent comments he expressed doubt about being ready in time for the Australian Open.

On the other hand, World No. 1 Novak Djokovic is 33 years old and in the best physical shape of his life. It is likely that Sinner will have many chances of playing against the Serbian champion in the future.

Never be afraid of making mistakes: Jannik Sinner on the best advice he has received

Jannik Sinner
Jannik Sinner

Jannik Sinner has a good team around him, which includes his family as well as coaches Riccardo Piatti and Andrea Volpini. According to the Italian, the best advice he has ever received is to not be afraid of failure as long as you are committed to the process.

"Never be afraid of making mistakes, even if sometimes I struggle," Sinner said. "My parents have always supported me by telling me to commit, even if the risk of making mistakes cannot be avoided."

Jannik Sinner also asserted that he doesn't have one single role model, but that he tries to take the best ideas from different people.

"There are people in many different sectors, not just one person ... I get ideas here and there," Sinner added.

With the Nitto ATP Finals scheduled to be held in Turin for five years starting from 2021, Jannik Sinner has extra motivation to climb up the rankings next season. But the Italian is wary of making any specific goals for the year ahead.

"Of course yes," Sinner responded when asked about whether the ATP Finals being held in Turin gives him extra motivation. "But I don't like setting too precise goals too much in advance. The important thing is to improve: I know I have a lot of margin (for improvement)."

Sinner also spoke about why he opted for tennis even though he was pretty good at skiing too. The Italian believes tennis gives you more chances, unlike skiing - where a single mistake can be costly.

"If you make a mistake, in skiing, you are out," Sinner said. "Tennis, on the other hand, always gives you another chance."
Published 15 Dec 2020, 12:57 IST
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