Federer’s Rome return has wife Mirka’s backing
Originally published on 14/05/14
The 32-year-old became a father to a second set of twins last week after wife Mirka gave birth to boys Leo and Lenny.
He held off deciding on his participation in Rome until the last minute but made the journey after being given the full support of his wife and team to attend.
"They all said I should quickly come and play here. So I was like, 'OK, if you don't want me around I'll go away’. That was basically it,” said the 17-time Grand Slam champion.
"Things went well, the boys are healthy and Mirka's good too, so it's a great time in our lives right now."
Federer, who has been a runner-up in Rome on three occasions, has not played since losing the Monte Carlo Masters final to Stanislas Wawrinka.
He makes his return to action on Wednesday against Jeremy Chardy and says he is keen to keep his momentum going.
"I expect a lot from myself but then after what happened I come here a bit more laid back, just enjoy it," he said. "I've had such a good start to the season that I want to just keep momentum on my side.
"I didn't want too big a break. And it doesn't matter whether I play five matches or one match here, as long as I stay with the pulse of things on tour. Of course I hope I can win my first-round match but at the moment I have totally different priorities."
Leo and Lenny are the world No.4’s second set of twins after Myla Rose and Charlene Riva, who turn five in July.
"I miss them a lot already and also the girls," he said. "It's a different type of week but I'll get through it and I hope I can still play some good tennis.
"This time around, we kind of know how to handle kids on the road. I'm aware it's going to be a lot of work but at the same time I know what I'm getting into. So it's something I'm very much looking forward to.
"There will be a long time without any traveling after the tennis is over, so I'm looking forward to the next couple of years now."