Roger Federer's long-time coach and friend Severin Luthi recently provided an update on the Swiss maestro's fitness and training schedule. Luthi claimed that Federer is yet to reach the desired fitness levels, and that practice sessions are not as frequent as they generally would be during tournaments.
Roger Federer is expected to make his second comeback of sorts at next month's Geneva Open, after having briefly appeared on tour at the Qatar Open a few weeks ago. The 39-year-old managed only one win in Doha, before appearing to struggle on the physical front in his second match against Nikoloz Basilashvili.
After assessing his condition, Federer announced that he would be heading back to the practice courts to regain full fitness. And last week, he announced that he would be returning to the tour for the Geneva Open and Roland Garros.
But in a recent conversation with SRF Sport, Severin Luthi claimed that Roger Federer still has some catching up to do before he can get into peak shape.
"In terms of fitness, Roger is still lagging behind, which is a priority," Luthi said. "Tennis practice sessions are very intense and good, but are not taking place that often yet like it would be in a tournament environment."
"Roger Federer is a very good listener, that's important" - Severin Luthi
Severin Luthi also talked about his working relationship with Roger Federer. Luthi claimed that Federer is a good student who heeds his coach's advice, but added that the decision-making rests solely on the 39-year-old when he is on the court.
"Roger is a very good listener, that's important," Luthi said. "But I see us coaches more as consultants. In the end, he decides on the court."
Luthi went on to shed some more light on his relationship with Federer, pointing to its symbiotic nature. The 45-year-old claimed that working with Federer has given him a few pointers in life as well.
"Roger gives you a lot back," Luthi said. "I've learned a lot on the human side."
Severin Luthi further revealed that he has a big role to play when he is in Roger Federer's box, watching his ward in action. Federer's coach explained that he generally tries to convey a sense of calm to the player, but that when the situation arises, he can show his emotions and celebrate points.
"I just try to do everything in my power to help him," Luthi continued. "I try to exude a certain calm. If I have the feeling that it is appropriate to show emotions or to get up, then I'll do it."