20-time grand slam champion Roger Federer underwent yet another knee surgery last month and is currently in recovery and out of action from the tennis court. He is expected to be back on court next season and has confirmed that he ‘can’t wait’ to be back on court as soon as possible.
Recently, in an interview with GQ Magazine, Federer spoke about the pressure young players are going through currently. He said that he followed Emma Raducanu’s journey at Wimbledon but said that it hurts him when young players are put under so much pressure.
“Yes, I think so,” he said on whether the younger players are put under a lot of pressure or not. “I was following Emma Raducanu’s incredible run in Wimbledon and also Naomi Osaka these last few years – it’s been amazing, both of their stories. But it hurts when you see what happens and when they don’t feel well.”
He agreed to the fact that the questions in the press conferences are always the same and it could get frustrating at times.
“The stress is so great. And I think a lot has to be down to social media: the first ten years of my life there was no social media, maybe I had just a website, then the next ten years social media was everywhere. Also, in regards to this, the press situation does need to be reconsidered. I think I’m one of the athletes who’s done the most press – ever! And I agree that it’s always the same. Always.”
‘I can’t imagine going through the beginning of my career with social media’: Federer
Federer even proposed a solution and said that it is important for players and journalists to sit and talk about what works best for both parties.
“I think players, the tournaments, journalists, we need to sit down together in a room and go, ‘OK, what would work for you and what works for us…’ We need a revolution. Or at least an evolution of where we are today,” he said.
He even said that it is important to teach the young generation how to deal with stress as there’s a lot of negative stuff on social media and as a player, this negative stuff stays on your mind.
He said: “I think we do need to help, coach and mentor the younger generation more. I can’t imagine going through the beginning of my career with social media; I have no clue how I would have handled it. For every ten nice comments there’s always one negative comment and, of course, that is the one you focus on. It’s a horrible situation. Even when I am feeling down I know I need to act a certain way in front of the world’s press. We need to remember that tennis players are athletes and professionals, but we are also human too.”