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Roger Federer (41) will retire this week as a tennis player at the Laver Cup. We revisit his impressive career in twelve memorable moments.

The Swiss made his debut on the ATP tour in 1998, when as a 16-year-old he received a wild card for the Gstaad tournament. Three years later, at Wimbledon, he already ended the winning streak of Pete Sampras, who had been unbeaten on the London grass for 31 matches in a row.

Football Highlights

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Roger Federer can barely realize he has beaten Pete Sampras

There was immediately talk of a changing of the guard and that also applied to the relations in Swiss tennis. Where the successful years of Martina Hingis came to an end, the country got a new hero in men’s tennis with Federer.

They even played together in a team competition, with success. At the end of 2001 they gave Switzerland the Hopman Cup, against Monica Seles and Jan-Michael Gambill, who then played for the United States.

AP

The two greats of Swiss tennis: Martina Hingis and Roger Federer

Federer won the first of his 20 Grand Slam titles in 2003, beating service cannon Mark Philippoussis at Wimbledon. In the quarterfinals, Federer had settled with the Dutchman Sjeng Schalken during that tournament.

AP

Roger Federer captures his first of eight Wimbledon titles

Where Federer and later Novak Djokovic flourished on the hard surfaces, the era of gravel king Rafael Nadal also began. With the mutual duels as absolute highlights.

Tears in Melbourne

In 2009, Federer was able to equal the fourteen grand slam titles of Sampras during the Australian Open, but Nadal put a stop to that. Federer then burst into tears, not knowing that he would pass Sampras later that year.

AP

Tears at Roger Federer

Federer won Roland Garros in 2009 by leaving Nadal’s conqueror completely without a chance in the final with Robin Söderling. And he was also the strongest at Wimbledon.

2009: Federer finally triumphs at Roland Garros

Remarkable, however, was the final battle in 2009 of the US Open, when Federer unexpectedly lost to Juan Martin del Potro. That was the only one of his eleven lost Grand Slam finals in which neither Nadal or Djokovic was the opponent.

AP

The only one of his 11 lost grand slam finals in which Roger Federer did not play against Rafael Nadal or Novak Djokovic

A month after Federer had won his seventh Wimbledon final in 2012, the replay against Andy Murray was a huge disappointment. Because the Olympics were in London, tennis was played on the grass of Wimbledon. But now Murray won.

An Olympic singles title will forever be missing from Federer’s honors list.

AP

Roger Federer goes down against Andy Murray on his favorite surface

Federer did win another prize in 2014 that was missing from his now rich palmares. With Switzerland he won the Davis Cup, because together with Stan Wawrinka he ensured the victory over the France of Gaël Monfils, Richard Gasquet and Julien Benneteau.

AP

Roger Federer and Stan Wawrinka give Switzerland the Davis Cup

Federer became a living legend and continued to peak through a somewhat more selective calendar into old age. Even though his body started to struggle more and more.

At the beginning of 2018, he first reached the milestone of twenty Grand Slam titles, by dealing with Marin Cilic in Melbourne. That had never been seen in men’s tennis at the time, although Nadal and Djokovic have now passed him.

AP

Roger Federer’s memorable 20th Grand Slam title is celebrated

A record that still stands is that of the world’s oldest number one ever. And he succeeded in 2018 on Dutch soil, when he promised to participate in the ABN Amro tournament in Rotterdam at the last minute.

Brave Haase

He scored the necessary points against Robin Haase. For the Dutchman, that match became an agony, because he did not want to deprive Federer of that glorious moment on the track. The brave Haase did not give up, even though he was struggling with the flu and even had to throw up during the decisive set.

AP

Roger Federer is the oldest number one in the world ever

Federer’s last grand slam final degenerated into a drama for the Swiss in 2019. On his own service he got two match points against Djokovic on 40-15, but after first a ball from Federer, the Serb eliminated the second point with a nice pass.

Djokovic wins big fight with Federer and takes fifth Wimbledon title

Two years later, King Roger waved to the public for the last time as an active tennis player, of all times at Wimbledon. For the first time in his career, he lost a set at Wimbledon in his quarterfinal against Hubert Hurkacz without winning a single game.

The ghost still wanted to, even though he was nearly forty by then. But the body couldn’t take any more. Not really.

AP

The last steps on Roger Federer’s tennis court, at his favorite Wimbledon

Twelve memorable moments from Federer’s career in pictures
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