26th GERRY WEBER OPEN 2017 June 18–24

Tickets +49 5201 8180 Mon – Fri. 9am – 5pm and Sat. 9am – 1pm.

Interview with Roger Federer

Congratulations. You said yesterday after our match against Zverev that this was going to be a very tough match. So what was the key and the medicine to this match and also do you think that serving second set helped you?
No, I don’t read into serving first very much, not even in a fifth set. I know the press or the commentators always talk about what an advantage it is to serve first in the fifth. I don't even see that one. No, I think for me it was important to be aggressive off the baseline, make him feel my variation, the power that I can bring to the court and then just good, intense footwork, you know, seeing the short balls, seeing the flow that I can come in and knock it off with a volley. I think I did that very well, had lots of chances to even go up double break in the second set and you know, maybe close out earlier in the first set. But he also had a few chances. So, I had to also be careful and my serve helped me out. I thought I was really calm out there even in more difficult moments. I was calm serving out first set, second set. Those are always signs for me that things are slowly starting to fall into place nicely.
I think you have done practice sessions with Karen, who you play next.
One time this week
I mean in the past.
I don’t think so. Has he said we did? Don’t tell me I forgot (laughs). I know we hit here which is most relevant anyway. Yes, we played like a set.
I wonder what your thoughts are?
Yes, interesting. You know, he plays a bit different, especially his forehand is a bit different than just the regular forehand technique we see. He is big and strong. He seems super excited to be on the Tour, he’s working hard. Because I don’t know him that well yet it’s a match that I have to most likely focus on my own game, make sure I serve well because he can go through spells where he can serve big and well. So, we’ll see how it goes. I think he’s going to be someone similar to how I played today I guess for me
Moving away from today’s match and the tournament and just speaking about the surface grass, could you talk more about the homogenisation of the surfaces?
I think it’s a tough surface to play on. There is a lot of adjustments you have to make. You are caught in a lot of awkward moments, awkward points, there is bad bounces, the ball doesn’t bounce very high, so you are usually moving forward rather than just sideways and that's a bit of a change to the other nine or then months of the year that we play on different surfaces. And then the slice on the backhand let’s say and the slide on the serve, they slide very well and you just have to get used to that. The problem is that we don’t have that many tournaments that we can really get used to it. So, somewhat the grass court season can be over in a hurry. But I think the feel on the grass is great, it’s soft, it’s quiet, you don’t hear the squeaking of the shoes like on hard courts or something like that. I just feel like that it’s a very calming surface in my opinion.
There’s been a lot of mentioning that the surface has gotten slower. How difficult has it been to adapt to this particular aspect?kamen Quoten für Wimbledon raus. Für die Buchmacher sind Sie der Favorit auf den Sieg in Wimbledon. Grade haben Sie gesagt, ich weiß, wo ich mich befinde. Was heißt das genau?
Well, look, I was a different player way back when at the end of the nineties, the beginning of the 2000s, that’s when things were maybe a bit faster. I feel like the balls have definitely changed. They are not as fast as they used to be. They’ve tried different types of grass. I think over the years they dug them out, redid them that does a world of good for the grass courts and makes them more playable from the baseline. At the moment, we have slower balls in my opinion and more top spin on the balls. You know the hybrid strings what we use today, it became much easier to play off the baseline and half volley without a problem of having to think of every single bounce could be wrong. Then it changed from … you’d rather hit a passing shot and a volley, when that mind-set changed nobody was coming in anymore. So, then there was just an entire generation as well, who liked to play more from the back than moving forward. But nevertheless we see guys moving really up onto the baseline again and even Murray, who started as a retriever way back, he’s playing well inside the baseline now, especially on the return games and tries to play one two all the time, same with Novak anyway. Rafa is playing close to the baseline maybe has to. So, we've seen the trend maybe changing a little bit these days.
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