Roger Federer is easily one of the greatest tennis players of all time, if not the greatest. But his brilliance is matched by a few athletes from other sports too, and Federer makes it a point to pay tribute to them - especially to those who are from his own country.
The most recent beneficiary of Roger Federer’s good wishes is none other than his compatriot and NHL defenseman Roman Josi.
On Wednesday, Roman Josi was sent several congratulatory messages from his teammates, friends and family at a mini-event in the Bridgestone Arena, where the mayor - John Cooper - proclaimed 23 September as Roman Josi Day. And the Nashville Predators captain even received a surprise message from his long-time friend Roger Federer.
Roger Federer congratulates Roman Josi on winning the Norris Trophy
This Monday, Roman Josi was awarded the prestigious James Norris Memorial Trophy for being the best defensive player in National Hockey League (NHL) during the 2020 season. In doing so, Josi became the first Swiss man to be bestowed with one of ice hockey’s most prestigious awards.
Immediately after this immense acclaim, a celebratory gathering was arranged in the home stadium of the Nashville Predators where a host of people sent in congratulatory video messages for Josi.
One of them was his compatriot Roger Federer. The legendary Swiss star was all smiles as he recorded his heartfelt tribute to Roman Josi.
A recipient of numerous accolades himself, Roger Federer wasted no time in letting the star blueliner know that he greatly admired him and the sport of ice hockey.
“Hello it's Roger Federer here, I wanted to congratulate Roman Josi on winning the Norris Trophy best defensive player of the year in NHL,” Federer said. “And I’m a big hockey fan myself for a long, long time and I just wanted to send my best regards here all the way from Switzerland.”
Roger Federer continued to wax lyrical about Roman Josi, even revealing he was the ‘biggest fan’ of the Predators’ captain. The man with 20 Grand Slam titles did not hide his delight at Roman Josi’s achievement as he remarked that he was ‘proud’ of him.
“He’s the first Swiss man also to do so and Roman’s also been a big fan of mine over, well for, since a long time,” Federer continued. “I know Roman since over 10 years now but today I’m your biggest fan, Roman. I’m so happy for you, I’m so proud of you and I wish you all the very best for your future.”Published 24 Sep 2020, 22:02 IST