Roger Federer was slated to make his official return to tennis in Wimbledon 2022, but his return has been extended to September later this year with the 20-time Grand Slam champion all set to make an appearance at the Laver Cup followed by the Swiss Indoors.
While fans across the globe await his grand return to the court as does most of his rivals, Federer dropped a shocking retirement bomb, giving the clearest indication about his future.
Federer last appeared exactly a year back at the All England Club where he lost to Hubert Hurkacz in the quarterfinal. Following the defeat, Federer underwent a treatment on his knee which left him on the sidelines for over a year. And now the Swiss maestro has also fallen out of the top 1000 players in the ATP rankings for the very first time in 25 years.
Speaking to Dutch newspaper, Algemeen Dagblad, Federer hinted that the time to draw curtains on his illustrious career is near.
He said: "I am a winner lover, but if you're not competitive anymore, then it's better to stop. I don't think I need the tennis. I am happy with the little things, like when my son does something right and when my daughter comes home with a good grade.
"Tennis is part of, but not my entire identity. I want to be and remain successful, and put a lot of energy into business - probably give more than I should sometimes, but that can also be done outside of sports. I know a professional career can't last forever and that's okay."
This was for the first time ever in his career that he missed the Wimbledon since making his debut back in 1999.
"It feels very strange for me not to play Wimbledon this year and to watch it on TV, as I've been there every time since 1998.
"But I've been on the road for so long that it was also nice to experience a little more peace and to be in one place more often, which already happened due to the coronavirus. It gave me the opportunity to selectively sort out my travels and give something back. Many friends always came to see me, now I could turn it around.
"The tennis itinerary was sometimes excessive, especially with having to organise that for the children too.
"It's nice to have a break from that now, and for them too, although they miss the travelling. We have friends all over the world and have developed routines for them as well. We haven't seen our friends in New York and Melbourne for a few years now.
"But I can honestly say that I am very happy at home. And that it is a great advantage that I can now make an appointment for a Tuesday morning in three weeks. And that I can actually do it without reality overtaking me.
"At times we miss travelling the world, and of course I also miss the sport, but also feel: life at home in a, let's say, normal way, is also good."