“Going to Be Able to Hold His Head High”: John McEnroe Feels Roger Federer Doesn’t Need a Formal Farewell

Published 08/26/2021, 10:30 AM EDT
Tennis – Wimbledon – All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, Britain – July 3, 2021 Switzerland’s Roger Federer reacts during his third round match against Britain’s Cameron Norrie REUTERS/Toby Melville


It was quite a disheartening moment for fans when Roger Federer announced that he would not be playing at the US Open 2021. He will be going through yet another knee surgery and thus, decided to end his 2021 season with immediate effect.

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In a recent interview to ESPN, tennis legend, John McEnroe, faced a really tricky question about Roger Federer. He was asked whether the Swiss Maestro is satisfied with himself and considering retirement now or he would like to play at another tournament before bidding goodbye to the sport.

Tennis – Wimbledon – All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, Britain – July 5, 2021. Switzerland’s Roger Federer in action during his fourth round match against Italy’s Lorenzo Sonego REUTERS/Paul Childs

“I wish I knew Roger well enough to answer that… To me, I don’t think he’d want to go out where he never played again. He could walk around any tennis stadium in the world as much as he’d like, he would get a standing ovation I would assume. I don’t know if he formally needs to go out and play Basel one more time so he gets that round of applause. I think that’s going to come either way. That’s totally up to him,” replied McEnroe.

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McEnroe believes that Federer has already earned a huge name that he doesn’t need a formal farewell. However, he also mentioned that it is quite frustrating to see him in his 40s when he is really struggling as a player.

“I just don’t want to see him out there where he’s — I experienced it myself, I know how frustrating it is. He’s way better than I ever was. You don’t want to see Roger Federer, if he’s 30 or 40 in the world,” added the 7-time Grand Slam winner.

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“Going to be able to hold his head high”- John McEnroe on Roger Federer

McEnroe highlighted that Federer playing the sport at 40 is an achievement in itself. He also emphasized that whether he chooses to retire from the sport formally or not, all the tennis fans will always be proud of him.

Tennis – Wimbledon – All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, Britain – July 3, 2021. Switzerland’s Roger Federer celebrates winning his third round match against Britain’s Cameron Norrie Pool via REUTERS/Jed Leicester

“Roger has been more fortunate. It caught up to him. But he’s 40. I mean, 40 in tennis, even now, is like 65 in another job. Either way he’s going to be able to hold his head high,” concluded the former World No.1.

It’ll be intriguing to see how much time Roger Federer takes before returning to the court. Fans still have huge expectations from him and want him to make a comeback as soon as possible. Will he be able to lift another Grand Slam title before bidding goodbye to the sport?

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DIVE DEEPER

“The Impact That Roger Had in Tennis…”: Former Doubles No.1 Picks Roger Federer as the ‘G.O.A.T.’

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Anshul Singh

1307 articles

Anshul Singh is a tennis author at EssentiallySports, currently pursuing Journalism Honors from Delhi University. Having significant experience with content, Anshul has authored over 500 tennis articles. He has previously worked as a writer and an editor for DU Express, penning riveting articles on sports, politics, and culture.

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