“Will Not Disappear”: Ivan Ljubicic Makes Huge Prediction on Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal Post Retirement

Published 12/16/2020, 2:05 AM EST
SHANGHAI, CHINA – OCTOBER 04: Roger Federer of Switzerland practices with his coach, Ivan Ljubicic at Qi Zhong Tennis Centre on before the start of the Rolex Shanghai Masters in Shanghai, China. (Photo by TPN/Getty Images)


Former Croatian star Ivan Ljubicic has said that while Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal will at some point hang up their racquets for good, their undying love for tennis will keep them involved in the game even after retirement.

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Tennis – ATP Finals – The O2, London, Britain – November 21, 2020 Spain’s Rafael Nadal walks off after losing his semi-final match against Russia’s Daniil Medvedev Action Images via Reuters/Paul Childs

An accomplished singles player of his time who reached a career-high ranking of Number 3 on May 1, 2006, Ljubicic is currently Federer’s coach and sparring partner.

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He also runs a sports management company – LJ Sports Group – which has tied up with rising tennis stars Matteo Berrettini, Borna Coric, and Daria Kasatkina, among others.

Many number ones disappeared from tennis after retirement, says Ljubicic

In an interview with Tennis Magazine Italia, the tennis-star-turned-sports-entrepreneur said that while there are some stalwarts who totally disappeared from tennis consciousness once they stopped playing, Federer and Nadal won’t follow suit.

Ljubicic said the thing that will bring him solace even when Federer and his arch tennis rival are gone from the professional circuit is their involvement with the game either in coaching, mentoring, or in an administrative capacity.

“They are both in love with tennis. When they stop playing, Roger and Rafa will not disappear,” Ljubicic said.

The Croatian added that there were some top players who literally vanished from the tennis map on retirement as they got busy with other interests and uncoupled themselves from the game. “There are other number ones that, once stopped, no one has seen them again. Roger and Rafa no, they will stay,” Ljubicic said.

(All quotes have been translated)

His assessment is not entirely out of place as a clutch of legends, including Steffi Graf, Pete Sampras and Patrick Rafter, have totally switched off from tennis on retirement.

Rafael Nadal runs an academy, Roger Federer has a sports management firm

Chances of a conscious uncoupling from tennis are comparatively less with Federer and Nadal, as they already have interests that are guaranteed to keep them involved in the game even after they quit.

The Spaniard runs a tennis academy, and the urge to bring up future stars will keep him interested in the game long after he calls time on his career.

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“Roger Federer Is My First, Second and Third Priority” – Ivan Ljubičić

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Federer has his own sports management company and is also the brain behind the Laver Cup, a team event named after Australian tennis great Rod Laver, which pits the top players from Europe and the United States against each other.

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Priyabrata Chowdhury

976 articles

Priyabrata Chowdhury is a tennis author for EssentiallySports. He has been a print journalist for a decade, producing news pages for leading national dailies such as the Hindustan Times and The New Indian Express. His passion for sports eventually drove him to tennis writing.

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