Someone once said that if tennis was a religion, then Roger would be the god. I couldn’t agree more. This twenty nine year old man has broken almost all records in the history of tennis and has stepped towards making new histories. He has achieved the record of wining sixteen grand slams which is the most that any player has ever won; he has also set a record of playing twenty two grand slam finals. Many sports analysts, tennis critics, former and current players consider Federer to be the greatest tennis player of all time. Pete Sampras, a tennis player, said that Federer can and will break every tennis record out there.
Federer, who is now categorized a legend, carries the highest number of ATP tournament titles. He is not just famous for winning matches but also because he plays it beautifully. The way he plays forehands, backhands, volleys and the way he moves on the court just make everyone fall in love with tennis. His playing style is well defined by Jimmy Connors, who states “in an era of specialists, you’re either a clay court specialist, a grass court specialist, a hard court specialist or you’re Roger Federer”. He is an all court and all round player with a high command on the baseline. He also plays serve and volley game and has the ability to make aces on crucial points.
What makes Federer different from other player is the variety of shots he plays in his games. He plays the right shot at the right time. His single hand backhand allows him the ability to bring variety to his backhand. He can play slice, topspin and flat backhand with various paces. He can play half volley from the baseline which enables him to play very close to the baseline and to pick up balls, even deep ones, very early after their bounces, thus giving his opponents less time to react to his shot. His fitness always helps him to be on top of the ranking. Federer always plays limited number of tournaments which keeps him safe from having injuries. His foot work is believed to be the main reason for boosting his game; he moves smoothly almost as if he is dancing and knows how to put each step in the right way. His cross court, down the line and inside out forehand shots are so tremendous that John McEnroe refers to Federer’s forehand as “the greatest shot in our sport”. Federer is believed to be like old wood or old red wine which gets better with age. His temperament is beyond explanation, the way he handles pressure, the way he hits winners on crucial points; he is a magician with a tennis racquet. There is hardly any weakness that is left in him, though he has almost always been perfect in every aspect of the game.
Every player has a specialty, like Sampras relied on his service very much, Hewitt has a good speed and Roddick on his big forehands, but Federer has everything – big serves, big forehands and backhands. Sampras admires him saying, “I’m a fan of his game, his temperament, the way he handles himself on and off the court. I do picture myself how I would play him. Now that I’m sitting on my couch watching, I just kind of marvel at the things he’s able to do. He’s a great mover, does great things on both sides of the court, can come in when he has to, and has a pretty big first serve. He has the whole package. There’s really nothing he can’t do. I just love it. He just makes it look easy. He’s smooth, a great athlete (2007)”
Players like Federer come in decades and for sure these multicolored grand slam courts will miss this legend for years after his retirement. The class of tennis that he has defined will remain for ages. He runs a foundation by the name of Roger Federer Foundation which provides the less privileged with an opportunity to acquire education and participate in sports. I wish, he may win more and more grand slams and other ATP titles and we keep enjoying his beautiful game.