17-time Grand slam champion Roger Federer is close to concluding what is arguably his worst season since 2002. He arrived in London with one title to his name but riding high off his improved performances in Basel (reached the final) and Paris (semi-final) and managed to use that confidence to secure a spot in the semi-final of the year-end championships.
“I see the light at the end of the tunnel,” Federer said. “There’s two more matches and that’s it. I just have to have the right mindset to give it one last go, maybe play with a little less pressure than I have in previous matches maybe with him. I just feel like I need to look at it more as being an underdog a little bit because of circumstances, because of my year, because of his year. Maybe that free swinging is what I kind of need to do a little bit more tomorrow.”
Federer showed clear excitement in his upcoming match against Nadal tomorrow, stating that the two know each other’s games well and that he already knows the game-plan he needs to implement against him.
“We know each other that well. He’s going to do exactly what he needs to do, I’m going to try to do what I need to do. Hopefully it’s going to match up good for me. If not, he deserves it. He’s had a wonderful season.”
The six-time World Tour Finals champion is coming off his worst season in the past decade and admits that he did not have many expectations for the year-end championships but was pleasantly surprised by the way things have played out this week.
“Clearly the goal is always to win every tournament,” he said. “But I think I had to be slightly more realistic in recent weeks and months. I knew that sometimes just getting a few rounds into the bag was positive…I don’t know if the goal was necessarily for me to try to win this event right off the first match. I knew I had so much work to do with Djokovic in the first round, having played Basel and Paris. I was curious to see how I was going to adapt, how everybody was going to adapt, to the London conditions. For that reason I’m very pleased now.”