It’s been around seven months now since Roger Federer last played competitively on the circuit. The Swiss is further expected to be out of action for another four months at the very least.
Federer should have been back around this time after his first surgery but due to the setback in rehabilitation, he had to undergo a second procedure on his right knee. Thus, much to the dismay of his fans as well as the tennis fraternity at large, Roger Federer ruled himself out until 2021.
While returning to tennis in one thing, finding his form and touch - after almost a year away from the game - is an entirely different ball-game. But former US Open finalist Greg Rusedski is confident that Roger Federer will succeed in that aspect.
While speaking on Amazon Prime, the British-Canadian recalled Federer’s vintage form in 2017 after a six-month injury hiatus and drew parallels with his proposed return in 2021. Rusedski also talked about the specific feats that the Swiss might be targeting upon his return.
Roger Federer would love to win a gold medal in singles at Tokyo: Greg Rusedski
When Roger Federer got injured in 2016, many believed it to be the end of his career. The Swiss was without a Grand Slam win since 2012, and he found himself ranked outside the top 15 (17th) upon his return at the 2017 Australian Open.
Federer, however, won the title against all odds, cementing his legacy even further. On the way to victory, Roger Federer beat a host of top players including his nemesis (and friend) Rafael Nadal in an epic five-set final.
To prove that that wasn’t a one-off, the Swiss won another Slam that year at Wimbledon and five other titles - Indian Wells, Miami, Halle, Shanghai and Basel.
This performance seemingly gives hope to Greg Rusedski that Federer would be capable of doing an encore in 2021. The British-Canadian strongly believes that Roger Federer will try to emulate 2017 as he would never want to ‘disregard his name.
“The last time he took a six-month break, he came back better than ever," Rusedski said. "So I hope that Federer comes back with everything next year. I think he will come back and be strong in 2021, he would never disregard his name.”
The ability to compete at the highest level has often been mentioned as a necessary aspect of his career, by Roger Federer himself. The 46-year-old Rusedski said something similar, and also spoke about Roger Federer’s long-standing goal of winning an elusive singles gold at the Tokyo Olympics next year.
“He will only play as long as he thinks he can win big tournaments. His big goal is the Tokyo Olympics, he still doesn't have a gold medal in singles and that is something he would love to win, as well as another Grand Slam," Rusedski added.Published 03 Sep 2020, 16:42 IST