Roger Federer remains determined to make his tennis comeback at the Laver Cup, but his agent Tony Godsick admits “he is feeling some pain” in his knee.
The 20-time Grand Slam winner has not played competitive tennis since he lost in the quarter-final at Wimbledon last year as he underwent a third operation on his troublesome right knee after the grass-court major.
He earmarked the Laver Cup – which runs from September 23-25 – as his return event, but Tages Anzeiger reported earlier this week that the 41-year-old suffered a major setback and is a doubt for the team event at London’s O2 Arena.
The Swiss media outlet revealed that Federer had “liquid in his right knee and it has become inflamed”.
However, the tennis legend’s agent, Godsick, insists the Swiss maestro is still hoping that he will feature at the Laver Cup as well as the Swiss Indoors in Basel in October.
“Federer has been practicing for some weeks now. He is feeling some pain but keeps trying,” he told Blich.
“He’s been training for weeks and wants to start in London and Basel. We’ll see at the Laver Cup whether his knee will hold up.”
Despite Federer’s aim to return in the second half of the season, Godsick admitted in an interview earlier this year that the former world No 1 will only return if he is fully recovered.
Federer initially injured his knee during the 2020 Australian Open and underwent surgery in February before undergoing a second operation later in the year. After returning in February 2021, he played a couple of events before having surgery for a third time in August.
“He won’t rush back this time. He will have to be 100% and know he’s 100% and that’s why he’s taking his time doing heavy rehab and training,” Godsick said in May. “It’s not just when knee feels good but building up the muscles and getting lungs back. I know he’s encouraged where he is.
“I don’t want to be the doctor but what I hope for him is to able to have a great rehab this summer, play some in the fall and give a nice shot at 2023, and then see what happens. I haven’t talked to him about that.”
Federer is due to team up with the rest of the Big Four at the Laver Cup as Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray have all signed up. However, there are also doubts over Nadal and Djokovic’s participation.
Nadal admitted after his US Open exit that he is not sure when he will return to action as he wants to spend time with his wife, who is due to give birth in the next few weeks, while Djokovic withdrew from the Davis Cup due to “personal reasons”.
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