Roger Federer says he will be content in retirement whenever he decides to hang up the racquet, revealing he’s been enjoying spending more time with his family during a 12-month absence from the ATP tour.
The Swiss legend hasn’t played since his loss in the fourth round at Wimbledon last year.
He subsequently underwent a third surgery on his troublesome right knee and has been slowly working his way back to full fitness.
On Monday the 40-year-old fell out of the official ATP rankings for the first time since his debut back in 1997.
Because he hasn’t played in over a year he doesn’t have any rankings points and is now without an official ranking on the ATP tour.
But despite his lengthy absence, the 20-time grand slam champion isn’t finished with tennis just yet.
He has committed to playing at the Laver Cup in September before a return to the ATP tour in Basel in October.
During an appearance at Wimbledon last week he also revealed that he wants to make one final bow at the grass-court grand slam before he retires.
But in an interview with Dutch newspaper Algemeen Dagblad, Federer said he will be happy and content whenever he decides to call it quits.
“If you’re not competitive anymore, then it’s better to stop,” he said.
“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.”
The Swiss maestro said his four children are missing being able to travel around the world to watch him play, but he is enjoying the change of pace.
“The tennis itinerary was sometimes excessive, especially with having to organise that for the children too,” he said.
“It’s nice to have a break from that now, and for them too, although they miss the travelling.
“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.
“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.”
Federer said it was ‘strange’ to be watching Wimbledon at home and not playing.
“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,” he admitted.
“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.”
Federer is now third on the men’s all-time grand slam titles list, with Novak Djokovic moving out of a tie with the Swiss legend with his 21st major at Wimbledon.
Rafa Nadal, who many believe is playing his last year on tour, is now two ahead of Federer after winning the Australian Open and French Open earlier in 2022.