Big reason why I came to New Delhi was to experience Indian fans, says Roger Federer
After enthralling the Indian tennis fans for two days in the much-awaited Delhi leg of the International Premier Tennis League (IPTL), Swiss legend Roger Federer on Monday thanked all the fans for their support.
Federer, who was leading Indian Aces, thanked thousands of fans who cheered him whenever he appeared on the big screen, or played a match.
“My fans are the ones who support me the most. They know how much I appreciate it. I don’t obviously scream it around all the time, they know, but if they don’t know and they are insecure that I didn’t see the banners and the flags and the shirts, I did and I really loved it. The big reason why I came to New Delhi was to experience the Indian fans and I can’t thank them enough and I am sure I will see some of them on the tour and the ones I don’t, I hope I’ll see them again hopefully here or in other cities in India,” he said during a press conference soon after his singles match with Novak Djokovic.
The final match of the day played between the World No. 1 and World No. 2 was the highlight of the entire tournament, where the Indian fans got a taste of some quality tennis.
“I really enjoyed myself and it couldn’t have worked out any better with super set. I was really really excited,” said the 33-year-old.
When asked whether considering the kind of competitive tennis he played against Novak, the match was in anyway close to the Wimbledon final he played against the Serbian earlier this year, the Swiss said the IPTL’s format cannot be compared with Grand Slams.
“What stands out to me is how much fun everybody had. And also that the legends are included and at the end of the match during the interview, both the players are happy. That is not something you see in Wimbledon or anywhere else. That’s why I believe there is a place for IPTL in the tennis world,” he stated.
Talking about the tournament in general, Federer said, “It would be great to have a format like this in the off season for a long period of time and then maybe you can jump cities, play at different venues.”
It was like playing at home for Federer at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium where the fans thronged in big numbers, just to have a glimpse of arguably the greatest tennis player of all time. Federer said he had a great time and would consider coming back next year as well.
“Definitely if I am asked, I would consider but then it needs to have a lot of talk done to team members, my family. It would be tough to say right now if yes or no but because I had such a great time here in the last few days, obviously it may be something you would want to do again,” he said.
Expressing his love for India, the Swiss maestro said he would want to travel around the country someday.
“Photoshop was so much fun. I was reading it all the time. I know that one day I will travel India in a big way as there is so much to see. It would be amazing to travel this beautiful country. I would really like to,” he concluded.