Some pretty tough news for Fedfans here as their player had to pull out of the remainder of 2016 due to the knee injury Federer suffered the day after losing to Djokovic at the Australian Open.
Since then, Federer played five events including Wimbledon where he lost in a five-set semi-final to Raonic. Still pretty incredible how close he came to making the final despite his lack of match practice coming into the tournament.
Clearly, Federer is still capable of playing at a very high level but recently I remarked that his health may not play along which happened to be the case. Thus, I am not very surprised at this news.
Federer’s best shot at winning that elusive #18 was the last couple of years where he made three slam finals and three slam semi-finals. During that time he played some of the best tennis of his career but Djokovic kept getting in his way.
It now seems quite unlikely that Federer will win another slam but who knows. He already hasn’t played much this season and now he is missing the rest of it. That makes me wonder whether he wasn’t too eager to come back at Wimbledon.
Now he will have even less match practice when he comes back and he loses a lot of that momentum he gained in the last couple of years after reinventing himself. The most that can be hoped for at this point is to see him healthy and playing tennis again.
Nevermind winning another slam or a Masters event even. It is sad to say but that is the reality of it at this point. I will miss his rivalry with Djokovic because the Djokovic vs Murray rivalry just isn’t very interesting.
There is no Djokovic vs Nadal rivalry either given how routinely Djokovic defeats Nadal these days and the fact that Nadal is getting more and more injured. It’s a bit depressing and some new players have to start stepping up.
But let’s face it, even though the Djokovic vs Federer rivalry will always produce great tennis it was becoming more and more one-sided. Djokovic won the last four slam meetings and most of the other important meetings.
With Murray winning Wimbledon and Federer losing to Raonic I felt there was a shift occurring at the top of the game. I already said after the Wimbledon final that Murray is now officially Djokovic’s main rival and there can be no doubt now.
Unfortunately, we may never see Federer scale the heights of the last couple of years again but it can’t be forgotten how talented Federer is and that he can still do damage when he comes back.
Not to be the bringer of bad news but all of this means several streaks of Federer will come to an end like consecutive years in the top 10, consecutive years of winning a title, and consecutive years of making the World Tour Finals.
Wishing him a speedy recovery!