‘Ljubicic was surprised by my easy ball striking earlier this week in Halle’: Roger Federer

10-time champion Roger Federer talks about his practice sessions in Halle and his goals ahead of the grass season.

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Roger Federer and Ivan Ljubicic
Roger Federer and Ivan Ljubicic

World No. 8 Roger Federer might have drawn some criticism after his withdrawal from the ongoing French Open. However, the Swiss maestro seems to be pretty focused on getting his season back on track ahead of the grass court swing.

Federer is currently in Halle, where he is also a 10-time champion. As per his latest tweets and pictures, he seems to be underdoing intense training session ahead of the tournament in Germany. He also shared clips from his practice session with Japanese star Kei Nishikori.

“My coach Ivan Ljubicic was surprised with how much cleverness and easiness I hit the ball during my first training session in Halle. I will try to be explosive and play freely. I’m going to probably push a little bit more in practice this afternoon or maybe tomorrow, just to get the body ready for the grass courts, and I hope I have no negative reactions,” Federer told the reporters in Halle.

Won his first title in Halle in 2005

Roger Federer
Roger Federer

The 20-time Grand Slam champion first won the Halle title in 2005 after beating Russia’s Marat Safin. Federer also became only the second man in the Open Era after Rafael Nadal to win at least 10 titles at a single tournament. In 2019, Federer beat David Goffin to win the title for the 10th time. In 2020, like many other tournaments, ATP Halle was also cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“I don’t know if my number one goal is to win the title. I am still recovering from Paris. The main goal is to head into Wimbledon being healthy. Feelings are good,” Federer added.

The ATP Halle 500 will start on June 14, where Federer will be eyeing his 11th title. Several top-ranked players Stefanos Tstisipas, Alexander Zverev and Andrey Rublev too will be playing in Germany next week. Given Federer’s liking and comfort for grass, it will be interesting to see how the Swiss star adjusts his game once again to succeed in Halle, ahead of Wimbledon.

Also read: WATCH: Roger Federer back on Grass as he prepares for the ATP Halle Open 2021