Federer maps out 2021 season and Olympic Games

Roger Federer of Switzerland returns a shot against Andy Murray of Great Britain during the Men's Singles Tennis Gold Medal Match in London 2012.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Roger Federer of Switzerland returns a shot against Andy Murray of Great Britain during the Men's Singles Tennis Gold Medal Match in London 2012. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

Federer might be out for the rest of 2020 after having two knee surgeries but he's now planning his 2021 season which might include the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 next year.

"I feel much better again," he said. "I'm not at the level where I can play [tennis] fully yet."

"The goal is really that I'm ready for next year," Federer told his fans online during an event to launch his new line of sneakers.

Federer, who is now focussing on his recovery, also said how he is putting this downtime in perspective.

"It's very easy to say but it's a long way to come back, you have to be patient, it also was a time for reflection."

In 2019, Federer confirmed his intention to compete in his Tokyo 2020.

“I carried the flag twice for Switzerland in Athens and Beijing, I’ve got a gold and a silver, and I would love to play again so I’m very excited,” he commented after playing an exhibition match against John Isner.

Federer will turn 40 during the re-scheduled Olympics. The Swiss star has won 20 Grand Slam titles in his career but has never captured any Olympic gold in singles.

He has played in four Olympics, winning the doubles gold medal with fellow Swiss player Stan Wawrinka at Beijing 2008, and a silver in singles behind Andy Murray in London 2012.

Still at the top

This week, Federer was supposed to taking part in Wimbledon, but the competition was thrown into disarray and was cancelled due to COVID-19. It's the first time the tournament has been cancelled since World War II.

Federer said how much he was missing competing in Wimbledon, a Grand Slam he has won eight times.

"...Of course I miss Wimbledon, of course I would like to be there currently playing on Centre Court for a place in the second week."

"Clearly, one of my big goals, and that's why I do recovery work every day and work so hard, and why I'm preparing for a 20-week physical preparation block this year, is because I hope to play at Wimbledon next year."

With the tour is set to resume early August, the men's ranking body has revised the ATP ranking system to accommodate the disruption.

The new updates to the ranking system are set to benefit Federer, who will stay safe inside the top five.

"In anticipation of a return to competition in August, the Rankings, which traditionally operate on a 'Best 18' results basis over 52 weeks will now cover a period of 22 months (March 2019 - December 2020). The Rankings have been frozen since 16 March 2020, just days after the ATP Tour was suspended due to the COVID-19 pandemic," the statement by the ATP said.

"A player cannot count the same Tour-level tournament twice in his 'Best 18' breakdown. For example, a player who played the Mutua Madrid Open in 2019 and plays Madrid again in 2020, will count the better of those two results."

"Should the 2021 season be impacted by COVID-19, further adjustments to Rankings will be considered."

Playing for fans

Apart from being able to compete, Federer also miss playing for his fans.

"Yes I do miss playing in front of the fans, no doubt. I think if tennis comes back [this year], we know it won't be in a normal way where we get a full crowds yet, so naturally we wouldn't be able to interact with the fans, like we used to, taking selfies, taking pictures, signing autographs, being able to speak to them, because I feel like the tennis player at heart is very close to their fans."

"Of course I miss it, but right now, we are going through a period where we just need to be patient and hopefully starting next year at some point, we'll see each other more often again and things are hopefully going to get somewhat back to normal.

"We gotta be patient, no doubt."

Federer also spoke about how he is keeping a positive mindset.

"My biggest strength is always to look at the bright side, look what's next. In tennis, you're only good as your next match. You cannot dwell too much on your losses so look forward, be positive and try your best and you will also have little regrets."