As the rain pounds down in Rome, Roger Federer said yesterday that one of the reasons he added Rome to his schedule was the weather! Whoops!
Federer, who’s had a history of back issues in the cold, said that staying and practicing in Switzerland would have been tough due to the bad weather back home.
“I felt like playing somewhat maybe more sea level conditions would be good for me,” Federer said Tuesday. “In Switzerland we have somewhat of an altitude everywhere you go, everywhere you look. The weather this week in Switzerland is also not great. Yesterday when I left it was like five degrees in the morning when I woke up. It’s just not ideal to practice this way as well I believe.
“Then I was in the mood to play. Would I rather practice or play matches? I’ve just come from practicing for five weeks after Miami. I think I was playing well in Madrid, so I just said, again, Let’s come to Rome, a city I like so much as well. There would be excitement, more excitement than me coming to a practice court in Switzerland . I thought that would be nice.”
But today, not even an 11am start could save him in his match against Joao Sousa.
Federer also wasn’t pleased that Rome doubled the ticket prices for today for fans who wanted to buy after he made his announcement to play.
“I heard some fans clearly were not happy about it,” he said. “That’s obviously disappointing to hear. They made it in a way like they rewarded the fans who bought tickets earlier, which is sort of strange, but okay.
“I’m just really hope it doesn’t take away the fact I’m really happy to be here. There’s going to be good crowds hopefully, good atmosphere. Personally I’m very happy to be here. I’m pumped up to play well. I mean, my excitement couldn’t be bigger.”
And the Swiss says he’s happy with where he’s at in his game.
“I think this week, then next week in Paris, it’s going to be interesting to see how I play the points, how I do it all,” Federer added. “In Madrid, like we said, conditions were extremely fast, so you could play serve and volley, you could come to the net. Here maybe it’s easier to play dropshots, easier maybe to go backhands up the line. On fast courts it’s maybe not so simple to do that at will.
“I must say also in practice in Switzerland I felt good right away. Very happy where I’m at, to be quite honest. I was a bit surprised that it went as easy as it did.”
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