Roger Federer: What the 20-time Grand Slam champion did next – Swiss star reflects on mentoring children, philanthropy impact and spiritual retirement



The opportunity to coach Roger Federer is definitely a dream come true for any young tennis player. Aside from the children of the Swiss tennis great himself, apparently.

Federer’s twin daughter and twin sons now play tennis up to four times a week, and while the 20-time Grand Slam winner is often on the court with him, he says he’s usually an afterthought. told CNN’s Christina McFarlane.

“I’m not a coach. I’m a father. And my father’s advice, you know, works only to the limit,” laughs the 41-year-old Federer. “It doesn’t matter if you won Wimbledon or not, you’re still a father and sometimes they don’t want to hear your opinion.

“I try to be funny, but I also try to be straight sometimes and teach them. .”

Federer admits he was relieved that his daughters Myra and Charlene didn’t show much interest in tennis when they were younger.

When they were born in 2009, Federer was at the height of his power on the court, constantly traveling around the world and spending little time at home. It would have been very difficult to invest time in growing a .

“I don’t think we were crazy tennis parents saying, ‘Girls, play two hours a day,'” says Federer.

“But now that they’re almost 14, I’m really starting to feel it. They want to play a lot more.”

Federer is thrilled that his children are following in his footsteps on the court, but although he says Lenny and Leo’s children in particular show promise, he thinks Federer is “very excited.” What feels “special” is their involvement in Federer’s philanthropy.

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Roger Federer Foundation, which has helped more than 2.5 million children in six countries in Southern Africa and Switzerland.

Federer’s Foundation is focused on providing parents, teachers and communities with the tools to give their children a strong education. His most recent visit was to Lesotho, which became the sixth South African country to become a member of the Foundation in 2020.

Roger Federer Foundation/Getty Images

This year marks the 20th anniversary of the Roger Federer Foundation.

“Field trips are always special for me, but this one was especially special because it was the first time all four of my kids were on board with my wife and mother,” Federer said. “So we had a great time.

“We stayed there for three or four days and traveled through Lesotho, a country I had never been to before. It was a trip for the kids, so something more geared towards them so they could play with the school kids, run around, play catch, play with the ball, and read to each other was.

“Honestly, as a father, it was a lot of fun to watch it and I hoped I could ignite it for charity and for my kids, so I think it was very special. So, great.” It was a trip.”

During the visit, Federer played in the sand with his children, read a book and sat down with schoolteachers to discuss the importance of giving children responsibility. He believes it’s “very important to get real” during these trips.

“We just watch the confidence grow in them and listen to how it really works and what we try to do. I have to give,” he says.

Federer was honored in a special ceremony on Wimbledon’s iconic Center Court on Tuesday, ahead of defending women’s champion Jelena Ryvakina’s first-round match.

The eight-time Wimbledon winner was greeted by a rapturous standing ovation as he was introduced to the crowd and entered the All England Club’s royal box.

It was a fitting tribute to a player who has provided this crowd with countless memorable moments during his 24-year career.

On September 23, 2022, Federer took the court for the last time as a professional tennis player. It was only fitting that he played doubles alongside Rafa Nadal when the duo, which provided tennis fans with perhaps the greatest rivalry in the history of the sport, played doubles at the Laver Cup in London.

The image of Federer and longtime rival and friend Nadal holding hands with tears in their eyes has become one of the most enduring images of 2022. As the years go by, it will undoubtedly become one of the most iconic images in sports.

Even Federer, who is in his 40s, said he intended to return to the tour after multiple knee surgeries, but was eventually forced to admit it was due to his injury.

There was no fairytale ending as Federer and Nadal were defeated by Jack Sock and Francis Tiafoe at the O2 Arena, but after “really, really scared” of the moment of retirement, the Swiss superstar said no more. To his amazing career that he couldn’t have hoped for a perfect finale.

“I didn’t tell anyone about it, really,” he says. “It was just to get away from it, but in the end [I had to] Decide: Where to retire? how much will it hurt Or how long will it be celebrated?

Clive Brunskil/Getty Images

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal played together in the final match of the Swiss star’s career.

“But in the end it was everything and more for me. I thought it was beautiful to be surrounded by Rafa and Novak. [Djokovic], [Andy] Malay [Björn] borg, [John] McEnroe [Rod] Laver, anything is fine, [Stefan] Edberg, they were all there, my team, my family was there too.

“I mean, it was a very, very nice ending because I was really, really scared of how I was going to get out of the game.”

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