US Open: Berrettini compares Federer to retiring Williams, hopes for Swiss maestro's return

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Matteo Berrettini outlined his desire to see Roger Federer return to the court as he compared the 20-time grand slam champion to retiring legend Serena Williams.

Federer has not played competitively since losing to Hubert Hurkacz in the Wimbledon quarter-finals last year, and has since undergone his third knee surgery in two years.

But the 41-year-old is hopeful of returning to the court for this month's Laver Cup, where he is set to team up with Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic for Team Europe.

Federer recently shared an encouraging video of a practice session on social media after stepping up his rehabilitation.

With tennis set to lose one legend after Williams' final US Open campaign was ended by Ajla Tomljanovic on Friday, the return of Federer would represent a major boost for the sport.

Speaking after beating Murray in the third round at Flushing Meadows, Berrettini said: "I think I said it so many times. Probably it's never going to be enough. One of the reasons why I'm here now is Roger.

"He was my idol when I was growing up. I was cheering for him, so I want him back really badly.

"He's just like Serena, I guess, one of a kind, you know?

"I wish him a really speedy recovery in whatever he's doing to come back. I wish I could play one more time against him."

Berrettini has lost each of his two tour-level matches against Federer, including a straight-sets defeat at Wimbledon in 2019.