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"It doesn’t take a ton out of Roger Federer or Pete Sampras to play at levels most players can’t even reach" - Paul Annacone

Roger Federer in action in Doha
Roger Federer in action in Doha
ANALYST
Modified 27 Mar 2021
News

Paul Annacone recently spoke about the greatness of his former wards Roger Federer and Pete Sampras. Annacone claimed that both of them didn't need to expend a lot of effort to play tennis that was beyond the capability of a majority of their peers.

Roger Federer made his long-awaited comeback at the Qatar Open earlier this month. After 13 months away from the sport Federer showed some signs of rust, but he managed to produce some scintillating tennis in the key moments to defeat Dan Evans.

A sore shoulder and fatigue ensured that Roger Federer couldn't get past Nikoloz Basilashvili in the next round. However, the Swiss' level exceeded the expectations of most experts and fans, with many marveling at the ease with which he produced his trademark shots.

In that context, Paul Annacone asserted that Roger Federer, just like another all-time great Pete Sampras, can produce his best without breaking too much of a sweat. Annacone particularly highlighted Federer's level-headedness, and described how the Swiss never lets his on-court success affect his personal life.

"It doesn’t take a ton out of them to play at levels most players can’t even reach," Annacone said of Federer and Sampras. "When you add [Federer’s] pragmatic approach, the rollercoaster of emotions tied to winning and losing tends not to surface in his life. He is pretty steady."
Paul Annacone believes that it is not easy being in Roger Federer
Paul Annacone believes that it is not easy being in Roger Federer's shoes

Paul Annacone also spoke about Roger Federer's love for tennis, which has been evident throughout his illustrious career. Annacone stressed that Federer's position and status in the sport come with a lot of responsibility, which the 39-year-old is adept at handling.

"He loves the game of tennis and enjoys the environment," Annacone said. "He has been at the top of the game for many years, and he accepts and enjoys the responsibility of being 'Roger Federer' — that sounds easy, but it is not."

Roger Federer confirmed for the Halle Open

Roger Federer will head to Halle
Roger Federer will head to Halle
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After the Qatar Open, Roger Federer withdrew from his next scheduled event in Dubai. Surprisingly, the 39-year-old also decided to cut his hardcourt season short by pulling out of the Miami Masters.

After his campaign in Doha, Roger Federer had asserted he would be looking to use the upcoming clay swing as a preparatory period for the all-important grass season. On that note, it was recently announced that Federer's presence had been confirmed at Halle, where he has been a champion a record 10 times.

The Swiss also won the tournament the last time it took place, back in 2019.

Before the grass season, Federer is also expected to take part in a few claycourt events. As per rumors, the Swiss star could wield his racket in Estoril before heading to one of the two pre-Roland Garros Masters events - Mardid and Rome.

Published 27 Mar 2021, 23:50 IST
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