As the opening day of the 2022 Laver Cup concluded, it marked the end of tennis great Roger Federer’s illustrious career. The Swiss maestro announced his retirement from professional tennis after 24 glorious years and 20 Grand Slams. In light of this occasion, the emotions through the O2 Arena in London were overwhelming.
Federer and his long-time rival, Rafael Nadal teamed up to face the American duo of Frances Tiafoe and Jack Sock. As this monumental fixture ensued, both Nadal and Federer pulled out all the tricks but the Team World pair held their nerves in clutch moments to win the match 4-6, 7-6(2), 11-9. After the fixture, Federer hugged Nadal and his teammates before breaking down in tears. Similarly, Nadal as well couldn’t hold his tears back.
Team Europe and Team World come together to celebrate @rogerfederer #LaverCup pic.twitter.com/LR3NRZD7Zo— Laver Cup (@LaverCup) September 24, 2022
All the Fedal feelings.#LaverCup pic.twitter.com/WKjhcADFoe— Laver Cup (@LaverCup) September 24, 2022
Federer was extremely emotional as he gave his farewell speech where he thanked Nadal and his entire team for their support over the years. He said, “It's been wonderful. And of course playing with Rafa, on the same team, having all the guys here and all the legends, Rocket [Rod Laver], Stefan Edberg - thank you. It is amazing, it really is [to share the court with Rafa and the others]. I didn't want it to feel lonely out there. It felt lonely for a second when they told me to come out one more time, it didn't feel great. But to say goodbye in a team, I always felt I was a team player at heart”.
“Singles doesn't really do that a whole lot but I've had a team that travelled with me around the world. It's been amazing with them. Thanks to everybody who made it work for so many years. Of course being on a team with Andy [Murray], Thomas [Enqvist], Novak [Djokovic], Matteo [Berrettini], Cam [Norrie], Stefanos [Tsitsipas], Rafa and Casper [Ruud] - and also the other team - you guys are unbelievable”, Federer further added.