home jobs contact us
Our Clients:
Browse by Sport
Find us on ASAP sports on Facebook ASAP sports on Twitter
ASAP Sports RSS Subscribe to RSS
Click to go to
ASAP Sports e-Brochure View our


January 20, 2020

Roger Federer

Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

R. FEDERER/S. Johnson

6-3, 6-2, 6-2

THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.

Q. You've never lost first round at a major since before you won your first major. Why?
ROGER FEDERER: I guess there is a few reasons that -- you know, some were close, let's be honest. There are a few that pop up in my mind right away.

I think also I became a better player. 32 seeds helped, you know, to keep more of those better-ranked players away, as when I came up on tour there was only 16 seeds and all that.

Yeah, then I guess I created a game which allowed me to manage maybe all kinds of opponents, you know, that were ranked outside of the top 30 in a first round like that even if there is rust or there is nerves and so forth.

Look, I'm happy that I was able to manage those first rounds. As we know, they can always be very tricky. That's why Masters 1000 are tough sometimes. You can play a top-20 player in the first round and that's when it gets tough.

Q. You have played here stacks of times, many times. Someone like Jannik Sinner has not played many. Wonder what you've made of his progression and what you've seen of him so far.
ROGER FEDERER: Well, it's not like I know him for that long either where I can tell you he was there and now he's here. I played with him in Rome a little bit last year and then when I got the Laureus awards in Monaco, I remember I practiced the next day there and I hit with him I remember, I think.

What I like about him is that he's almost got the same speed of off-shot on forehand, backhand, similar to Felix and some other guys.

Back in the day, you know, you had one -- like Steve Johnson today, you go to the backhand, you know it's going to come slower and you go to the forehand and you know it's going to come back faster.

With Yannick I don't feel there is such a thing, which obviously he needs to manage when to pull the trigger and how big you can go. Because it's not quite realistic to just keep on whacking the ball full speed. He has great footwork for a big guy, because we forget how tall he is, as well.

And then he can play, again, like most of the best movers in the game right now, he can also play open stance and closed stance, which I think is a huge advantage for movement for the future.

So I think we'll see so much more from him. He's an exciting guy and super sweet kid, which I always love to see.

Q. About lower expectations coming into the tournament, can you talk about why that was? In your experience, especially Grand Slams, how that can change at an event, maybe you start lower and it builds up?
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, look, I just haven't played proper matches in many, many weeks, and a lot of guys, probably 95% of the guys are coming here with matches. So I'm not one of those guys. Now I have one. Best of five, too, which is even better.

So I think for me really the first three rounds are key to get going, to get used to the pressure, stay calm, when to save breakpoint or 30-All points or whatever it may be or just to stay calm if you're down a set and a break or whatever it might be.

This is sort of the unknown that can be a little bit scary at times. But today there was none of that because I broke early each set and was able to get on a roll, play freely after that. And also felt I had margin. You know, anything I was doing I felt like I had the game under control.

That might not be the case in the next round, so I just think I have to be careful. Round-by-round, point-for-point mentality.

I know other guys that are playing extremely well right now so I think it's just important to stay very calm about things right now.

Q. How do you think the courts played this year? Slower or faster than last year?
ROGER FEDERER: I think similar. I think balls play fast when they are new, a ball change for a couple of games, depending on who you play, how long the rallies are right then. But I'd say two to four games it can play faster.

But the balls fluff up extremely quickly here when you do get into long rallies. And I feel night sessions or indoor or on a cool day like what we will see in the next week, actually play quite slow.

So it is what it is, you know. But I think it depends on how you play maybe also and how you manage your game and what kind of opponent you have, for all sort of playing styles, I guess.

Q. As someone who has been very successful, what would you say you have picked up through your career in terms of suggestions and ideas for other people who are trying to be successful, like businesspeople or artists or whatever?
ROGER FEDERER: What I took from them?

Q. No, I mean what do you find are good recipes for success that might be applicable to other...
ROGER FEDERER: Well, I don't know. I'm not an artist or a musician by any stretch. I think learning quickly, you know. Understanding what you've been told, because in a message you can always pick the things you like and then apply them. Even if it's wrong, you think, Wow, that's how I understood it.

Understanding the message correctly I think is a key element to improve, and also maybe sometimes questioning the person who's telling you the things so you really understand what they mean, and then -- I don't know.

At the end of the day, old-school work ethic, there is nothing wrong with that. I do believe if you're in a slump, not feeling well, whatever it may be, knowing how to train hard, when to train hard, with who to train hard, there is nothing wrong when it goes to those things.

And learning from your mistakes is key, as we remember our losses more than our wins. It's just important that when you do lose, you know, you really make the most of it, because it's actually an opportunity.

Q. You have won many Australian Opens before.
ROGER FEDERER: You have to speak up.

Q. You have won many Australian Opens before. How has success here in the past helped your season moving forward?
ROGER FEDERER: When you win it's all good, you know. Or even when you make a semis and beyond, you know you're in good shape, plus you're just coming off the off-season so you have the confidence. You have practice, you know, flowing through your body, too.

The problem is sometimes when you play too many matches and you don't have that practice block, in a way you're just playing to win, just trying to weasel your way to the next victory and you forget how to properly play tennis.

So I think the Australian Open, it's nice if you play well, but there is no drama as if it doesn't go well for the rest of the season, in my opinion. It's worse if later in the season success is not there and you're missing that block of practice and you can't rely on it anymore because it's too far back.

That's why I like to have sort of longer extended practice sessions, probably twice a year, because I think that helps my game.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

ASAP sports

tech 129
About ASAP SportsFastScripts ArchiveRecent InterviewsCaptioningUpcoming EventsContact Us
FastScripts | Events Covered | Our Clients | Other Services | ASAP in the News | Site Map | Job Opportunities | Links
ASAP Sports, Inc. | T: 1.212 385 0297