Roger Federer Injury: How Long Is the Swiss Maestro Out, Recovery Timeline and Return Date

Published 08/28/2021, 1:32 AM EDT
LONDON, ENGLAND: Roger Federer of Switzerland reacts following defeat in his Men’s Singles final against Novak Djokovic of Serbia during Day thirteen of The Championships – Wimbledon 2019 at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club in London, England. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

Knee surgery for a professional athlete is as bad as it can get. As for Swiss maestro Roger Federer, he will undergo his third knee surgery in two years. But, most tennis fans still don’t know much about the procedure and Federer’s absence.


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While Federer has enjoyed one of the most successful tennis careers ever, he has also had his fair share of injuries. Notably, the weight on the latter part has increased in recent years, mainly because of his right knee. Hence, to understand this, let’s answer a few questions.

What has happened to Federer’s right knee? How long will it take him to recover? Can he return to the Tour?


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All you need to know about Roger Federer’s right knee surgeries

Days after his loss to Novak Djokovic in the Australian Open 2020 semifinals, Roger Federer announced the unfortunate news. He explained that under medical guidance, he underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right knee.

“My right knee has been bothering me for a little while,” Federer wrote on an Instagram post. “I hoped it would go away, but after an examination and discussion with my team, I decided to have arthroscopic surgery in Switzerland yesterday. After the procedure, the doctors confirmed that it was the right thing to have done and are very confident of a full recovery.”

Despite the surgery, Federer was confident to join the Tour at Wimbledon Championships. But, a while later, his legs started to show abnormalities such as swelling, so he had to undergo his second surgery.

“A few weeks ago, having experienced a setback during my initial rehabilitation, I had to have an additional quick arthroscopic procedure on my right knee,” Federer said on Twitter.

Consequently, he decided to dedicate his entire 2020 season to recovery. He didn’t miss too much action, however, as even tennis had been off for six months due to the coronavirus pandemic.

What is the arthroscopic surgery that Roger Federer underwent?

Unlike traditional surgery, arthroscopic surgery is less invasive and effective. To elaborate, doctors make a small arthroscopic incision in the knee to repair the damage.

Also, while full recovery is possible, it usually requires about two to three months. But, it entirely depends on the person.

When did Federer return to Tour after his two right knee surgeries?

Instead of planned Wimbledon 2020, Federer returned 13 months after his first right knee surgery in Doha. However, after a few minutes on the court, it seemed as if he had never been gone.

Rafael Nadal of Spain congratulates Roger Federer of Switzerland on winning their Men’s Final as Roger Federer holds the Norman Brookes Challenge Cup match on day 14 of the 2017 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 29, 2017 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

Previously, in 2016, Federer had undergone surgery on his left knee to repair a torn meniscus. Following that, he made one of the most memorable comebacks, winning the Australian Open 2017 title.

Watch this story: INSANE: Roger Federer’s Jaw Dropping Shots on the Tour

Will Roger Federer return in 2022? If yes, when?

In 2021, the now 40-year-old made some notable performances. Federer’s best result came at Wimbledon, where he reached the quarterfinals.

Tennis – Wimbledon – All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club, London, Britain – July 7, 2021 Switzerland’s Roger Federer walks across the players bridge Pool via REUTERS/Ben Solomon

Since then, Federer has not returned to the Tour. Instead, he planned his third surgery and ended his 2021 tennis season.

“I’ll be on crutches for many weeks and out of the game for many months,” Federer updated on Instagram. “I want to give myself a glimmer of hope of returning to the Tour in some shape or form.”


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Despite the three surgeries, Federer’s passion for the sport is undying. The same passion gives him a chance of returning to the courts which would otherwise be difficult given his physical condition.

Accordingly, the tennis maestro would try for a Australian Open 2022 return. Tennis fans hope that they get to see Federer at his best before he hangs his racquet.


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Do you think Federer will return in 2022?


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Purav Joshi

1142 articles

Purav Joshi is a Tennis author at EssentiallySports. Having a degree in Films, Television and Media Production, he guided his passion for writing and journalism into the sport of aces and rallies. With over 2 years of experience as a copywriter, Purav has authored over 500 tennis articles.