Roger Federer's 2021 raised more questions than answers. The former world number 1 was unable to repeat the miracle of 2017, on the contrary, he gave the feeling of being on the avenue of sunset. The Swiss star has played just 13 official matches this year, racking up nine wins and four defeats.
The round of 16 at Roland Garros and the quarterfinals at Wimbledon were his best seasonal results, certainly not an exhilarating tally for a legend of his caliber. In addition to hailing the Top 10 for the first time since 2017, the 40-year-old from Basel had to have his knee operated on for the third time in the last 18 months.
The King will start racing again at the beginning of the new year, while to see him again on the tour we will have to wait until at least the summer of 2022. His presence at Wimbledon is at great risk, as admitted by Federer himself in a recent interview.
To the microphones of the moneycontrol.com portal, Christopher Clarey, a well-known correspondent for the New York Times, did not express great optimism regarding the chances of the Swiss player to return to competition.
He said: "Roger Federer is doing everything possible to return to the field and give himself a decent finish, there is no doubt about it. At the same time, I want to be brutally honest. I don't think he will get the success he is looking for and I wouldn't be surprised if he decides to give up very soon.
His last game ended with a bagel at Wimbledon, certainly not the epilogue that Roger wants to leave in the minds of his fans. The chances of seeing it again at the highest levels are low, it is useless to go around it. The opponents are more numerous and stronger than in his last full season Federer's love of tennis has remained intact, which is why he wants to return.
Furthermore, the Swiss has laid the foundations for what his life will be like after tennis."
Tiley: "Novak Djokovic will not necessarily be in Australia"
The 2021 season is over and by now the whole circuit is enjoying these mini holidays waiting for the Australian tour.
In the first days of 2022 we will start with the ATP Cup, there will be several minor tournaments and at the end of the month there will be the long-awaited Australian Open, the first Grand Slam of the year. For the first time for a tennis tournament, athletes, as well as professionals and fans, will also have to have a vaccine requirement in order to play in the tournaments that will be played in Australia.
Because of this some athletes see their presence in doubt and the first of these is the reigning champion and world number one Novak Djokovic. Several times the Serbian has in the past questioned the situation regarding the vaccine and, even today, has not yet specified whether or not he has had the COVID-19 vaccine.
In the last few hours, some good news had arrived, but now there was an abrupt and important slowdown. The organizers of the Australian Open 2022 announced the entry list of the men's and women's tournament and in the men's one, with the exception of Roger Federer, all the best in the world were present.
Novak Djokovic was also in the Entry List and the organizers themselves spoke of a certain presence of Nole ready to defend his title. Tennis Australia director Craig Tiley slowed down and made important statements on the Entry List and on the number one in the world: "The official entry list of the tournament came out and Novak Djokovic was also present.
However, that was only a formality and all this does not mean that he will surely play the tournament." Once again the presence of Nole is questioned and by now only his answers regarding participation are awaited, answers that will undoubtedly arrive in the next weeks of 2021 and before the start of the Australian tour which should see Nole also protagonist in the ATP Cup.