|Browse by Sport
|Find us on
March 19, 2017
Indian Wells, California
R. FEDERER/S. Wawrinka
THE MODERATOR: Roger wins his 90th title here. Start with questions in English, please.
Q. Congratulations. There seemed to be a lot of emotion on the court really from both of you after the title was there. Talk about that a little bit and your feelings.
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I mean, look, sports is emotional. So when you win or when you lose, sometimes it's stronger than you. I like to see it. I think fans like to see it, too, seeing that players actually care a lot about winning and losing.
At the same time, I think Stan can be very proud of his efforts here and the start to the year. And the tournament he played here was great for him. He's always struggled in the past in the desert. And then, for me, the dream run continues. The fairytale of the comeback that I have already shown in Australia.
Again, I'm not as surprised as I was in Australia, but still this comes as a big, big surprise to me, nevertheless, to win here again and beating the players that I did and the way I did. I mean, couldn't be more happy.
It's an absolute, huge start to the year for me. Yeah, last year didn't win any titles. I don't think I was in any finals except maybe Brisbane last year.
The change is dramatic, and it feels great.
Q. Let's clear this up. Were you really laughing when Stan was crying at the presentation?
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I was trying to actually cheer him up. He knows that. I was trying, when he looked at me, not to give him the sad face. I was looking at him, going, You'll be fine, and gave him a laugh, say, maybe gets his mind off it. I guess I achieved that (smiling).
Q. Is that the first time ever in your life you have been called an asshole?
ROGER FEDERER: Joking? No, many, many times before. That's why I take that as a compliment, you know, (smiling).
There's not always cameras around, so I get called that sometimes. Quite often, actually. On the court is the first time, but it felt good.
Q. Going back to Australia briefly, Ivan was, like, a kid when you won that and he won here as well against Andy Roddick. Going into today, what did he offer you as advice?
ROGER FEDERER: It was his birthday too. It was nice for him on many levels. I think I won today because once before I have played him on his birthday here. I beat him and he had to stay out there and I presented him with a cake. Maybe not the most fun birthday, at the end of the day, but we go way back and we're good friends.
So it's the case with Tommy Haas, as well. So for us to stand on court with Tommy, as well, it was very special, I think.
Yeah, what was he telling me? He was just reminding me of what I have done well and not so well for the tournament, and what I did well against Stan and not so well maybe in Melbourne.
So that was basically it. Fairly simple. I didn't have to change my game around that much from previous matches, which I think helped me going into the finals. Because sometimes you have to really, you know, adjust a lot, depending on who you play.
Then, of course, I also did speak to Severin -- because he knows Stan extremely well -- before the match just to hear if anything he had to add. He always has some good points that I tend to forget or, you know. So, yeah, I think all of that, what they told me, actually worked out very well today.
Q. Such an extraordinary achievement. A tough question, but can you talk about your own achievement and where does it come from? Is it from your basic athleticism and skill set there, for your commitment to the game, your commitment to the physical side? Could you just talk about the building blocks of your own career and your greatness.
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah. I mean, look, my biggest weakness was to be able to focus every single week and have the same drive for the 25, 30 tournaments I used to play.
It's natural that you will favor certain surfaces over another or certain continents over another. I've gotten to learn how to just block that out and just enjoy every week that I play now. I also play less, which helps. So when I do play, I'm very excited.
I have forgotten the time away from the tournaments, as well, may that be vacation or may that be, you know, training. I understand why I do it, because every time I do come out of it, I feel the benefit of it, at least for a while, at least.
I can be very thankful to the team that I have had around me for so many years now that have sort of guided me in the right direction and made it easy for me to work hard. I think at the end of the day it's not an easy thing to do, but when you have the right team in the right place with the right people, it actually ends up being a lot of fun.
Yeah, and I guess I just turned the corner at the right time. Not that things were slipping away from me, but people were wondering where results were at, you know, back in 2002 when I broke into the top 10 and wasn't really making it deeper on the slam level.
So I think it came at the right time for me to win Wimbledon. It wasn't too early, wasn't too late. It was perfect. And the rest from there was history, really.
Q. Coming back, you had a long view on the season. Is it any kind of mental challenge now you have had such great success so quickly to go forward for the rest of the year?
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I think I felt that in Dubai. When I sat in the locker room after the Donskoy match, Severin told me, Maybe this is the best thing that happen to you looking forward to Indian Wells and Miami, because you really need some time away from -- some more time off.
Because I just wasn't 100% prepared, unfortunately, because of the injury I was carrying after Melbourne. I was still tired. I was lacking energy. I tried to explain it in the press conference, but it was difficult because the court was there, the press was here, and the shower was on the other side. But I tried to make a good point, just that Donskoy played great and I really struggled.
When I came here, what I promised myself was I was going to play with the right energy. And it's not always Grand Slam finals. It always starts at zero. You have to get yourself up for the first rounds. Sometimes in Dubai I finished, I don't know, midnight.
It's not so simple sometimes, you know, when you lose that second set somehow to just, you know, stay super positive and super happy after just losing that set where you should have never have.
Yeah, and then I got here, and I felt right away good about how I played in that first round. Excitement, the energy, everything was clicking.
So from that standpoint, I was very happy there. And then in November, you know, December, when I realized things were going well, and we had a meeting about what are the goals for the season in terms of rankings, it's really super secondary, but, you know, I wanted to set -- or we wanted to set some goals for the season, and the goal was to be top 8 by after Wimbledon. Because if I would have lost early in Australia, you know, I would have dropped to 35 in the world.
It was a good approach, I thought, you know, because it gave me time to get there. So I'm there much, much faster. Like you say, I don't want to say it's a problem at all. No, it's great, but you definitely have to reassess your goals maybe now and see, Where do you go from here? Because this was not part of the plan, to win Australia and Indian Wells, I can tell you that.
So I think now it's really important for me to rest up maximum. I hope I can play as late as possible going to Miami. Then really, like I said before, I will make the plan for the remainder of the season after -- especially for the clay after Miami, and then see also what the goals are, because the goals are clearly changing after this dream start.
Q. Just to sort of extend that a bit further, at this stage in the comeback, do you think that you have physically the power to do what you have done this week, to take that to Miami and back it up?
ROGER FEDERER: I mean, look, confidence does wonders sometimes, you know, in the sense that you just play, don't think about it, don't know how tired you are, until all of a sudden it's all too much.
I think I'm going to be fine on that front just because I'm feeling too good on the court and I'm having too much fun. Winning creates a lot of good energy.
But I know how hard it is to win back-to-back Indian Wells and Miami titles. That's why again I sort of go to Miami knowing, like, it's going to be really difficult. I don't know the draw yet. As we know in Masters 1000s, draws are brutal early on already. There is no warming up and playing qualifiers ranked 250, sometimes, which even they are not easy to beat sometimes on any given day. And especially best of three sets, margins are small.
And then Miami is going to be different. It's going to be humid, it's going to be windy, day sessions, night sessions, all that stuff.
So, yeah, I will just try to stay healthy this time around, not sick like last year in Miami. But definitely I think rest right now is the absolute top priority for the next four, five days.
Q. Could you please give us a little bit of a window into what your day is like before you actually emerge from the tunnel onto the court on a finals day? For instance, what time do you come to the site and what are you doing during the match before, given that it's a "Not Before," and you have no idea how long it may last?
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I mean, I try to finish my warmup usually two, two-and-a-half hours before my match. So I was calculating I would walk on at 1:00, because that's the earliest it can happen. If it goes longer, you wait around, watch the match. I went for some more food just to not be starving in case my match also went three hours, you know.
And then in the morning when I wake up, usually I just have my breakfast and stretch my body and do some sort of core exercises. That's all part of the warmup these days. I never used to do all that stuff. I can't believe what I'm doing, but I'm doing it because I feel better in the process.
Yeah, and then tape my ankles probably an hour before the match, warm up, I'm ready to go.
Q. Were you put out in any way by the fact that the women's match lasted three hours?
ROGER FEDERER: No. You have to understand how many times we have been waiting in our career. That's part of our life, really, waiting for matches to end. So this was actually really, really easy today (smiling).
Q. How are you going to balance your tennis career and your singing career?
ROGER FEDERER: It's going to be really difficult, I think (smiling). I have heard really good feedback, getting so many offers now. That's why I'm not sure I can keep on playing as much as I was playing.
After Miami, I really have to reassess my goals, not only as a tennis player but also as a singer now. I have to align that with Grigor and Tommy. It's going to be quite difficult. But I'll let you know if you need to know what our schedule is, our tour, T-shirts, where we are going to be performing (smiling). I'm kidding.
Q. Concerning schedule and balance, you mentioned missing your sons' birthday. I'm wondering now with the kids and priorities in life, does that make you more focused when you come out here?
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I mean, look, it's simple. When you play less events, the events become more important overall. When you play more, you can go into them, just say, Let's see what happens. I think a lot of players play -- that's why they play more events because they can play with less pressure.
So I clearly play with more pressure because I play fewer events. I think the balance between playing and not playing is really important for me, because at the events I need to be somewhat serious, you know, about the tournament.
We flew around the globe, it's a 12-hour jet lag, with the kids, and we try to get over that as quick as possible. Yet I try to be a good dad and good husband and try to figure all that part out as much as I can so that days don't finish for me too late.
Unfortunately I have to do massage during the day which I don't enjoy doing because that takes away time spending with the kids and you have to manage that, as well.
You know, everybody knows what I'm going through, even the girls know, understand, you know, that I have to sleep well at night. I can't be woken up every morning, which that's almost the case.
No, it's great fun. And that's why scheduling is not just what my goals are as a tennis player, but also so I can align it with Mirka and my kids that I know I'm not asking too much from them, as well.
That's why after Miami, actually, the rest of the year is actually fairly easy when it comes to time change. It's really the first three, four months which are kind of tough with Australia back and forth and Dubai and then here. The rest is actually fairly easy. It's only just once to the East Coast and that's it and Shanghai, but I do that usually by myself.
Q. One little thought: If Stan promises never to call you a rude name on court again, will you allow him to join the One-Handed Backup Boys?
ROGER FEDERER: No, no, no. He doesn't need to change his tone. He's all good. He might have to change his tone in the singing room. I don't know his singing level. He's totally invited. It's the One-Handed Backup Boys. They are all welcome.
It's the double-handers that we have to discuss the whole process of who is allowed and not allowed. But the one-handers are there, keeping it alive, really (smiling).
FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports