Roger Federer – the 20-time Grand Slam champion – played his first clay court match in almost two years. However, this was not the return the legendary tennis player had hoped for.
The 39-year-old pro, who has had two surgeries on his right knee in the past 15 months, lost 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 to Pablo Andujar in the second round of the Geneva Open on Tuesday. It was only his second tournament since the 2020 Australian Open.
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“He (losing) never feels good,” Federer said. “Looking at the long way I’ve come since returning, I’m sure it’s gratifying to be back on a tennis court, but you know I expect better of me.”
Federer admitted after the game that “there just wasn’t enough going on in my game”.
“I was a bit limited today, I felt, on the pitch. That’s what it is. You just have to accept it and move on,” Federer added.
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Despite the dismissal, Federer is still ranked No. 8 in the world by the Association of Tennis Professionals. The next stop for Federer is the French Open, which hosted his last game on clay. In 2019, he fell to Rafael Nadal in the semi-finals of the tournament.
“Roland Garros is not the goal,” said Federer. “The goal is the grass, so I still have time.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.