Roger Federer has decided to enter the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships in March. This will be the second tournament of Federer's much-awaited comeback to the ATP tour.
The Swiss had announced last week that he would be making his return from a year-long injury layoff at the Qatar ExxonMobil Open in Doha, which will be played from 8 to 13 March. The Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships, an ATP 500 event, is scheduled to take place from 14 to 20 March.
Roger Federer has not competed on the ATP tour since the 2020 Australian Open, where he lost in the semi-finals to Novak Djokovic. The 39-year-old underwent knee surgery in February 2020, followed by another procedure in June, which forced him to call time on his season.
Last month, Federer decided not to make the trip Down Under for the ongoing Australian Open. The Swiss had revealed at the time that he needed some more time to recover and be 100% ready for his return to the professional circuit.
Federer's participation in Dubai will depend on how his knee holds up during his comeback event in Doha. But his entry into the tournament will surely come as a welcome sign for his millions of fans across the world.
Roger Federer is an 8-time champion at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships
Roger Federer has been practicing in Dubai, which has served as his off-season base for several years, since mid-December. Moreover, the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships is one of Federer's favorite hunting grounds on the ATP tour.
Roger Federer has amassed a 53-6 record at the Dubai event thus far, winning the ATP 500 level tournament a whopping eight times. His last triumph at Dubai came in 2019, when he defeated Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-4, 6-4 to claim his 100th tour-level title.
In Doha, the first stop on the Federer 2021 comeback train, the Swiss maestro has a 26-3 lifetime record. He has won three titles in Doha but has not played there since 2012.
Roger Federer is currently ranked No. 5 in the world despite having not played for over a year. This is mainly because of the change in the rankings system to offset the effects of the tour disruption amid the COVID-19 pandemic.