Federer happy for a breather
Originally published on: 21/05/12 00:00
Roger Federer would no doubt love to have reached the final of the Rome Masters 1000 tournament, but the 30-year-old Swiss said he had always expected Novak Djokovic and Rafa Nadal to fight for the ultimate spoils at the Foro Italico. Federer went to Rome direct from Madrid, where he won the title, and said he was pleased to have gone as far as he had in the Italian capital.
Having lost to Djokovic in the semi-finals, Federer was asked about his fitness. He said that although a recent back problem had cleared up he had “other little things happening now, so I’m happy for a break”.
He added: “At this point I’m very tired. It’s been a lot of tennis, a lot of night session matches. I’ve just been living and breathing tennis every single day, so I need a little bit of a breather. I’m looking forward to some days off and then just getting ready for Paris.”
The match against Djokovic – his first against the Serb on clay since he won their French Open semi-final last year – was Federer’s ninth in 11 days. The former world No.1 said he had been delighted with the last fortnight, especially as he had taken a lengthy break before Madrid. Federer said that Djokovic was “world No.1 for a reason” and that he still took plenty of positives from his performances in Rome.
“I almost couldn’t have done any better,” he said of his fortnight’s work. “Sometimes when you don’t play a professional tournament for five or six weeks and you come back and play right away like that it really takes its toll. I’m more than pleased with this week and last week. Now obviously with some rest and some great practice in Paris hopefully I’ll be in the best possible shape for the French Open when it comes around.”