Roger Federer Died Twice Long Time Coach reveals Federer Twelve Final Days Of  career, 

Federer documentary delves into final days of career .

A new Amazon Prime documentary goes behind the scenes of Roger Federer’s final days before retirement

At one point during Asif Kapadia and Joe Sabia’s new 90-minute documentary, the microphone picks up Roger Federer’s long-time coach Severin Luthi noting that “athletes die twice”.

That sentence is a prominent topic of Roger Federer: Twelve Final Days, which recounts the period between the Swiss tennis great’s retirement announcement and his final match in September 2022.

After a 25-year professional career, during which he played 1,750 competitive matches and won 20 Grand Slam singles titles, Federer’s final on-court performance took place at the Laver Cup.

Roger Federer reacts after playing his final game a doubles with Spain's Rafael Nadal of Team Europe in the 2022 Laver Cup at the O2 Arena in London.

With teary speeches, tributes, and appearances from giants including as Rod Laver and Bjorn Borg, the occasion was a celebration, but also a way of bidding farewell to the then 40-year-old’s career.

Towards the end of the film, the tennis legend reveals that thoughts of retirement have been accompanied with a worrying question: “What happens next?”

After Federer had made his decision to pull out, director Sabia was allowed behind-the-scenes access to the athlete’s family and staff for this sensitive period.

Kapadia, who made films on Ayrton Senna and Diego Maradona, was then brought on board to co-direct and add archive footage.

Here are a few thoughts from the documentary.

Federer’s wife Mirka found it painful to watch his decline

Injury ultimately prompted Federer to call time on his career. Between 2020 and 2022, he had three knee procedures, making it to only three of the 11 Grand Slams conducted in that time. During that span, he saw his record of 20 Grand Slams exceeded by both Rafael Nadal, who has 22, and Djokovic, who has won 24.

His lowest ebb was a 2021 Wimbledon quarter-final loss to Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz. Federer, who previously spent a record 237 straight weeks as world number one, had by then slipped to eighth in the world rankings.

After a match where he committed 31 unforced errors, he traipsed off court, visibly disillusioned with his atypical performance.

During the documentary, Federer states that his wife Mirka “almost wanted to look the other way” while he was battling and that it was only after he had told her he was quitting that he knew how much she had been suffering.

He wasn’t ‘fully convinced’ by Djokovic when they first played

Novak Djokovic hits a backhand against Roger Federer, 2006.

Federer first faced a then 19-year-old Djokovic in 2006

Between July 2005 until August 2009, Federer and Nadal occupied the top two slots in ATP rankings.

However, a new claimant to the throne appeared near the conclusion of that period.

Novak Djokovic won his maiden Grand Slam at the Australian Open in 2008 and was ranked number one for the first time in July 2011. Since then, he has eclipsed both of his rivals’ achievements.

However, when Federer first met Djokovic in 2006 in Monte Carlo, the 42-year-old says he was not “fully convinced”, despite “hype” around the young Serb.

“I think I didn’t give Novak the respect he deserved because of his technical flaws,” says Federer, adding, “I felt like Novak had a very extreme forehand grip and his backhand for me wasn’t as fluid as it is nowadays.”

He does go on to claim that Djokovic “ironed out” his shortcomings to become “an unbelievable monster of a player”.

Media caption,

Roger Federer on retirement, rivalries and Euro 2024

‘It’s not my personality’

Federer has been hailed for his beautiful manner of play, as well as the lightness with which he wears his success.

However, during one scenario, the former world number one addressed the criticism occasionally leveled at him that that he does not always fight hard enough while losing.

“I didn’t quite understand what that meant,” says Federer, adding, “do I have to grunt, do I have to sweat more, do I have to shout more, do I have to be more aggressive towards my opponents?”

He goes on to claim, “I tried, but it was all an act,” adding, “it’s not my personality”.

Federer slams ‘effortless’ idea in graduation address

Nadal says it’s ‘painful’ to know he’ll never have the feeling of facing Federer again

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal both cry after Federer's final professional match at the 2022 Rod Laver Cup.

The emotions continued as cameras accompanied Federer and Nadal into the locker room at the Laver Cup

No one is more interwoven with Federer’s career than Nadal. The couple played one another 40 times from 2004-2019 and developed a fantastic rivalry.

They are also close pals off the court. Federer states in one scene: “I think it’s possible to play tough and fair, but at the side be friendly.”

Federer’s final professional outing saw him combine with Nadal in a doubles match at the 2022 Laver Cup and both were in floods of tears afterwards.

Federer reveals during concluding scenes that he knew Mirka and “the Rafa angle” would be the ones that sent him started crying at his farewell.

Meanwhile, Nadal believes of Federer that his legacy will “stay in the world of sport forever” and that we will never again see “any player with that flow, with that perfection, that elegance”.

Elsewhere, he believes that the sense of playing against Federer in a Grand Slam final is “a different atmosphere” and a “different kind of pressure”. He confesses that it seems “painful” to know he will “not have that feeling again”.

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