Thanks to his father's globetrotting lifestyle Switzerland became home to the most successful player in the history of tennis.
Roger Federer is No. 2 on Forbes Magazine’s list of World’s Highest-Paid Athletes with estimated earnings of $71 million in 2012, trailing just golfer Tiger Woods, who earned $78 million.
"The Roger Federer foundation supports this particular project because it is in the poorest neighbourhood in South Africa. We feel these kids need the most help to succeed later on in life." said Federer.
Andre Agassi believes tennis superstar Roger Federer ranked alongside the likes of Jack Nicklaus and Michael Jordan as one of the greatest athletes of all time.
They’re both 31, both turned pro in 1998 and both are still going strong. In the brutally demanding world of tennis, Roger Federer and Lleyton Hewitt are inspiring symbols of longevity.
''I feel fit; I feel confident. I feel fit and fresh and that’s very important at this point in the season. I'm excited about what's to come now,'' Federer said. ''I'm very pleased with how I played this week. Mikhail was playing good enough to win today. No doubt about it."
The Swiss lifted the trophy in Halle for the sixth time, having previously triumphed in 2003-06 and 2008 (d. Kohlschreiber). He also finished runner-up in 2010 (l. to Hewitt) and 2012 (l. to Haas) and has a 43-5 event record.
The 31-year-old Federer clinched his 13th tour-level grass-court title, having also won The Championships at Wimbledon seven times. He will look to complete the Halle-Wimbledon double for the fifth time (2003-06) by retaining the Wimbledon crown he won last year with victory over Andy Murray.
"I'm very happy. It was a great week for me and my family," said Federer. "I thought I played well from the start and I really had to fight for it, in the semis against Tommy Haas and in the finals against Mikhail Youzhny. I think I did well today and they are exactly the kind of wins I need at this part of the season. I've been preparing well for this part of the season and I'm happy it's paying off. It's obviously important for my confidence looking forward to Wimbledon now."
Federer improved to a 15-0 Head 2 Head record over Youzhny, dropping a set for only the fourth time against the Russian, whom he beat at both Halle and Wimbledon last year.
With such a dominant record over Youzhny, top seed Federer fired at the start of the final to win the first three points on his opponent's serve. However, the Russian did not crumble as he saved four break points to move a game in front.
Youzhny with a wide forehand was unable to convert his first break opportunity of the contest and allowed Federer to level, and the former was now starting to grow in confidence thanks to a fine winner down the line.
The following four games were shared between the pair, and Federer failed to take advantage with a crucial break to lead 6-5. When Youzhny held to lead by that score line, his break point was one for the set, but with a serve out wide Federer thwarted the Russian and forced a tiebreak.
And the tiebreak swung one way and then the other as both players raised their level. Youzhny secured the mini break at 4-3 when Federer over hit a backhand and opened a two-point lead, but the Swiss rallied back to get to 5-5.
However, the momentum of the world No. 3 was halted when he hit the net, and with a second set point to his name, Youzhny clinched the set with a volley to seize the initiative.
A lapse in concentration from Federer handed Youzhny the opening set, but the Wimbledon champion erased the sloppy errors and turned into a force in the second - producing brilliant cross-court winners and not dropping points in three of his first four service games.
A run of eight consecutive points enabled Federer to break at 5-3 as he capitalised on serving first in the set, and with it Federer sent the final into a decider.
Both players were strong on their serve in the final set, but for only the second time in the match Youzhny struggled on his in the seventh game, and on the back of consecutive love services Federer pounced by digging a backhand down the line.
And with the break in the bag Federer closed out the win to get his hands on a first trophy of the season, and a sixth on the grass courts of Halle. The record 17-time grand slam champion goes into SW19 full of confidence to defend his Wimbledon title. Wimbledon starts from 24th of June 2013.
''I tried everything but Roger was just better. I cannot do anything about it. The difference was that he was better today - he's been better all his life,'' Youzhny said.
Date: 16th June 2013, Source: ATP and ESPN
After a patchy start on Saturday the Swiss looked sharp on the grass as he prepares for his title defense at Wimbledon later this month.
Federer, five-times champion at Halle, will take on Russian Youzhny, who outclassed former Wimbledon semi-finalist Richard Gasquet of France 6-3 6-2.
"I felt good out there, and as I had predicted it was a tough match," Federer, the world number three, said in a courtside interview.
"I have not won a title this year, twice I have lost here in the final in the past years. It will not be easy but I am really looking forward to it."
Federer had 15 aces and Haas finished with nine double-faults. Consecutive double-faults by Haas at the end of the third game of the final set gave Federer the decisive edge.
''On the big points, Roger showed again what qualities he has,'' Haas said. ''I think I still played well and gave my best.''
"It would be very nice to win any title during the season, because it gives you incredible confidence," said Federer. "You know that you're on the right track, you know you're doing the right things, the hard work is paying off and your scheduling seems to make sense. Winning tournaments is everything. For me, it would be great to win the final. It comes at the right time. If I don't, I know I can still build on something because I've had a good few weeks so far. But, no doubt about it, I'll try everything in my power to win tomorrow."
Having finished runner-up in 2010 (l. to Hewitt) and 2012 (l. to Haas), Federer is looking to reclaim the trophy he won from 2003-06 and 2008. He is 12-4 in grass-court finals, having also won The Championships at Wimbledon seven times, including last year (d. Murray).
Federer improved to an 11-3 Head 2 Head record over Haas as he rallied from a set down for victory in one hour and 38 minutes. The Basel native, who joined with Haas for the first time in doubles this week – they lost in the first round – was broken in the sixth game of the first set as he lost the opener. But he quickly wrestled momentum from Haas, racing to a 3-0 second set lead before levelling the match. Another early break in the third set paid dividends for Federer as he unseated the defending champion.
"It was a great match for me to play and then also to win," said Federer. "Tommy can play really well here. We saw that last year here and in previous years he’s also been successful. I’m very happy that I was able to maintain really a high level of play."
"After losing the first set, there’s not that much margin anymore. I think he won most of the big points in the first set. Then in the second and third I was able to turn it around and win the big points myself. So, it was a big, good win for me. And I thought the quality was also extremely high."
"It was a very close match, a very good match," said Haas. "At the beginning of the second set, he was trying to be a little bit more aggressive. He played some really great points and deserved to break me early on. He started serving very well and didn't give me many chances to try and break him. Once he starts running ahead, he's very hard to catch up, especially on grass."
Date: 15th June 2013, Source: Reuters and ATP
''It's not something which is easy to do. You never go into a match aiming for that score,'' Federer said. ''I was very surprised that it happened today, especially on grass."
''I think it is disappointing for a serve and volley player to go down like this. It shows also how easy it is to hit passing shots or returns today in this day and age. But I really expected him to cause me more trouble with his serve. First of all, he is a lefty. And then it is a grass court, he is a serve-and-volley player, so you always think he’ll find a way to make me feel uncomfortable somewhat with my backhand."
"I just had a pretty easy time picking up his serve, and made a ton of returns, and always made him hit first volleys under the net. And then eventually maybe he forced a bit too much, or didn’t believe as much anymore in his own serve, and that gave me a lot of opportunities."
"This is not really how I want to win my games; it is a bit uncomfortable. Now I need to switch from today's match to tomorrow's difficult encounter." added the five-times Halle champion and last year's runner-up.
He will now play German veteran Tommy Haas in a repeat of last year's final.
Date: 14th June 2013, Source: Reuters
The Swiss had Stebe under pressure from the start, breaking in the very first game with several deep forehands which had the world No. 166 pegged to the baseline.
Stebe failed to break back, handing number one seed Federer several easy points for a routine service hold. The 17-time grand slam singles champion returned the favour with misplaced backhands to allow Stebe his first game on the board.
It proved a momentary lapse from the world No. 3 as Federer again hit deep towards the baseline to force the pressure; it soon paid off as Stebe netted his forehand to gift the double break.
The German rallied in his response, breaking to pull it back to 5-3, but Federer wrapped up the first set in 33 minutes when Stebe slammed his cross-court backhand into the net.
It proved a similar story in the second, as Federer broke early once more to establish the advantage when Stebe's forehand went too long.
Federer hardly had to move out of second gear as his opponent offered little resistance when facing serve, and despite Stebe looking to settle himself with two holds, Federer simply appeared too strong when defending his own.
Despite suffering a second double fault when serving for his first match point, Federer did not make the same mistake when rushing to volley a backhand winner over the net and complete victory in little over an hour.
Federer now faces world No. 156 Mischa Zverev in the quarter-final on Friday.
Date: 12th June 2013, Source: ESPN
The Swiss superstar also joined Gerry Weber Open tournament director Ralf Weber to present a €5,000 donation to chief physician, Professor Dr. Johannes Otte.
“It was nice to see what the Gerry Weber Open does for these kids who are not so well. It was also nice to see the hospital has a vision,” Federer told ATPWorldTour.com. “We visited the room inspired by Marco Chiudinelli, who is a good friend of mine. Next year, they'll do my room. I'm always happy to create some awareness. I've heard a lot about it and was happy to be there in person.”
Weber said, “It was a very touching image seeing Roger sitting amongst the young patients and intensively interacting with them. I am happy that he was able to give the children such great moment and memory.”
Federer is no stranger to philanthropic efforts. The 31-year-old has his own foundation, the Roger Federer Foundation, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, and was the ATP’s Arthur Ashe Humanitarian of the Year in 2006.
“We have achieved a lot but still I always have the feeling that we are right at the beginning,” Federer said during his pre-tournament press conference.
In 2012, the Bodelschwingsche Stiftung Bethel Childrens Hospital was awarded a €10,000 grant as part of the ATP ACES for Charity grant programme. The Gerry Weber Open has donated €65,000 over the past years for three therapy rooms. Named the “Dwingi rooms”, they are decorated with modern therapeutic facilities, which offer young cancer patients more intimacy and independence.
Otte praised the generous support of the tournament, explaining the rooms “will significantly help the healing process of ill children. Our young patients really love these rooms. For us, they are an important therapeutic support.”
Date: 11th June 2013, Source: ATP
Federer is the top-seeded player in Halle, one of the grass-court warm-up tournaments for Wimbledon. Four of his seven Wimbledon titles came after Federer also won in Halle.
''Halle is one of my favorite places on the tour, and being successful there makes it even more likable,'' said Federer, who will be seeking his sixth title in the cozy event, where players step on court practically from their hotel rooms.
He lost the Rome final in two quick sets to Rafael Nadal, who pulled out of the Halle event to rest after his eighth French Open title.
“It’s all about getting a bit of rhythm and timing on grass,” said Haas before the game. “That’s enormously important, particularly on grass and when you have a bye into the second round.” That worked rather well with Haas and Federer showing they were very alert in front of an enthusiastic crowd on Center Court. They soon led 2-0, but they wasted a break which would have made it 4-1, and that proved decisive. Melzer and Petzschner became more decisive, returning stronger and breaking back before taking the first set on a tie-break.
Federer and Haas continued to deliver a tense and spectacular battle against the Wimbledon and US Open champions. But when Haas dropped serve at 3-4, the game was as good as over. Jürgen Melzer and Philipp Petzschner, who warmed up wearing a shirt of football club Arminia Bielefeld with the words “congratulations on promotion” to the 2. Bundesliga, held serve twice to take victory.
“It was great fun, it’s just a shame that it wasn't quite enough,” said Federer. “I just made a few too many mistakes, which is why I’m not all that satisfied today.” Haas added: “It’s incredible - we’ve known each other for so long and only play doubles together today for the first time. Unfortunately, we didn’t take our chances, but we were up against a strong pairing who already know how to play doubles.” Both Federer and Haas now have a break until Wednesday at the earliest before starting their singles’ campaigns. Melzer and Petzschner are both in action on Tuesday with their opening singles’ matches.
Date: 10th June 2013, Source: Gerry Weber Open
Only recently, the maestro and the “Golden Oldie” took part in a combined training camp in Switzerland to prepare themselves for the clay court season. Last year, the two firm fans’ favourites battled it out for the singles title at the 20th anniversary edition of Germany’s only ATP event on grass, and Haas emerged as the surprise champion. Only recently, Federer underlined his great respect for Haas’ comeback among the world’s elite. “What he’s achieved is simply unbelievable,” he said. “It’s also fantastic for our sport and for the fans in Germany." Haas, meanwhile, has always referred to Federer as “the best ambassador you could ever imagine in tennis.”
Both are serious candidates for the singles title at the 21st Gerry Weber Open, and will also be firm favourites for the doubles, which they could both win.
Date: 8th June 2013, Source: Gerry Weber Open
"Talent" That's Robert Federer's immediate response when asked which of his own traits he sees in his son. But it's accompanied by hearty laughter, drawing his eyes into narrow slits and raising his bushy brows. This is a man who laughs a lot, and who knows how to look on the bright side of life at all times. It's true that he got his wife Lynette – and thus, indirectly, his son as well – into tennis. But he also knows that she provided the better genes as far as athletic talent is concerned. "She was already an outstanding field hockey player when I met her," he recalls. "But she had problems with her legs because of all the hits."
Date: 7th June 2013, Source: Credit Suisse