Roger Federer is one of the most successful athletes in history, both on and off the court. And while there is no doubting the incredible talent and hard work that have gone into that, the Swiss maestro also has a tremendous team supporting him.
Federer's super team not only includes his family, his coaches and his support staff, but also his agent Tony Godsick - who is known as one of the shrewdest minds in tennis.
Godsick has displayed immense business acumen over the years to help Roger Federer bag multiple million-dollar endorsement deals with big-ticket brands. And Carlos Costa, the agent of Federer's arch-rival Rafael Nadal, recently provided an insight into how Godsick sealed the Swiss' contract with Gillette - a deal that Nadal was also being considered for.
The story dates back to 2006, when Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal were ranked No. 1 and No. 2 in the world. The then 24-year-old Federer was in the midst of one of his career-best seasons, where he won three of the four Slams. Nadal meanwhile was just 20 years old, and had just claimed his second French Open title.
To get a jump on the Nadal team, Tony Godisck got golfing superstar Tiger Woods, already a brand ambassador with Gillette, into Federer's box during the 2006 US Open final. Carlos Costa described that move as “brilliant”.
“They brought Tiger Woods into Roger’s box,” Carlos Costa told the Dartmouth Alumni magazine. “I believe that there are two types of agents in our industry: those who think small and those who think big. Tony is one of those who thinks big and will never accept a ‘no’ for an answer."
Not many people are as engaging and charismatic as Roger Federer: Tony Godsick
It's no secret that Tony Godsick has played a very big role in Roger Federer's success. The Swiss was recently named the highest-earning athlete in the world, with his overall earnings crossing $100 million, and a large share of the credit for that goes to his agent.
Together, Federer and Godsick have also created Team8, a sports management agency that is behind the wildly successful Laver Cup event. It is therefore not surprising that there's a tremendous amount of mutual respect and admiration between the pair - as acknowledged by Godsick himself.
“Roger is an extraordinary human being as it relates to relationships,” Godsick said. “Not many people are as engaging and charismatic as he is. He makes it fun.”
Roger Federer on his part believes that mutual trust and common goals have been the key factors that have contributed to their successful relationship.
"Tony and I have been working together for more than 15 years," Federer said. "We have developed a good sense of trust to make sure we are aligned with the same goals. It’s not about him and it’s not just about me. We have grown together."Published 12 Jan 2021, 19:49 IST