Federer quizzed by Bercow

Published: Friday 26th December 2014 by The News Editor

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Roger Federer faced an inquisition of a different kind recently as he had his brilliance examined by John Bercow.

Used to being tested by the likes of Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray and Rafael Nadal, the 17-time grand slam winner was questioned by the Speaker of the House of Commons.

Bercow chose Federer as his subject when given the reins for a festive edition of the Today programme on Radio 4, having followed the Swiss’ career closely.

A former junior player of some repute, Bercow has watched Federer 65 times this year and asked the 33-year-old what has been behind his enduring presence at the top of tennis.

“I realised very quickly that it’s an entirely different thing winning something for the first time and then having to come back the following year and defend it,” Federer told the show, which airs on Boxing Day.

“I think once I reached a certain level… I looked up to the great other athletes out there (for motivation), like Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, Valentino Rossi and Michael Schumacher – people who did it so long, so many times and make you wonder ‘How did they do that?’.

“Next thing you know, it’s like you’re part of that in a small way, and every year that goes by you get closer to those people. I think they were definitely a big inspiration for me to keep working hard.”

Federer remains a stellar attraction wherever he goes, despite the fact that his last slam victory came two and a half years ago.

And he says that being treated as such has meant he has kept his appetite.

“I definitely am fortunate to always be playing on Centre Court and very often prime-time,” he said.

“I must say – and this is honest – I don’t know if I would still be playing if they would put me on Court 4 every day.

“That would be difficult for me, having played on all these wonderful courts around the world and now playing in front of a fraction of those people – that would be rough.”

Federer and his wife this year had twins, the second pair the couple have.

He does not know, though, whether or not any of them will follow his lead.

He added: “I don’t know if the kids are ever going to play tennis at a high level like that.

“Honestly, I think it all depends on how things are going to be when we settle in Switzerland, and what sport they are going to take up.”

Published: Friday 26th December 2014 by The News Editor

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