Roger Federer prepares for ‘last dance’ with Rafael Nadal at Laver Cup

Roger Federer prepares for 'last dance' with Rafael Nadal at Laver Cup


In a perfect world, Federer would have loved to go out to fight for his sporting life in a major tournament – just as Serena Williams did when she saved five match points in a turbulent finish against Alja Tomljanovic at the last US Open. Instead, he’s pushing his wrecking knee through what’s effectively a doubles fair.

However, Federer’s long farewell at least provided the fifth edition of the Laver Cup with a goal he had been lacking so far. And the low-risk environment of the O2 Arena provides the perfect setting for the 41-year-old whose body has finally collapsed. The fact that Federer founded the event himself, in 2017, suggests he could add “Vision of the Future” to his long list of accomplishments.


Behind the scenes, the Laver Cup social media team celebrates with the presence of the so-called Big Four, who are uniting on the European team for the first time. Even before the tournament started, we’d already seen them share the field for a doubles knockout, pile into the Tower of London for an elegant private dinner, and discuss local architecture on a stroll along the South Bank.

“What happened to him?” asks Murray in one short video, looking at the pointed tip of The Shard. That’s it. Federer replies: It’s like broken glass. Even now that these millionaires are in their mid-thirties, he still feels like my dad. As if to underscore the point, Novak Djokovic, the eternal younger brother, is gleefully exiting. From the sidelines: “Andy, he’s giving you lessons about London!”