Roger Federer has spoken out on his chances of returning from injury in time for the upcoming 2021 Australian Open.
The 20-time Grand Slam champion has been out of action for almost a year, having needed two operations on a knee injury back in the summer.
The Australian Open is looking set to start on the 8th of February, a delay of three weeks due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and the restrictions that that has brought in terms of entering the state of Victoria.
Although nothing is confirmed yet, it looks like Federer has some chance of playing by then, and he may be worth backing for those who might have done so with a bet on French Open results during September and October.
“I would have hoped that I would be 100% in October. But I am still not today. Let’s see how the next two months will unfold,” Federer was quoted by BBC Sport.
“The second knee operation was a huge dampener, but in the last six months there has been steady progress.
“Let’s see how the next two months will unfold. I’ve been doing a lot of physio and physical work lately, now let’s see how tennis is doing.
“It will be tight for the Australian Open,” he added.
Back in February, Federer announced he had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee, which looked like it could see him return to the court by July.
However, in June he revealed that he’d had to have a second operation after a setback during his rehabilitation, and his absence has gone on a great deal longer than expected.
Federer even admitted during the summer that he’d considered retirement after his surgery.
“It has definitely been a big moment for me, with the coronavirus and the two operations I have had on my knee and I have had to consider if I really want to keep going [with my career],” he told GQ Magazine in a July interview.
“It is easy for me to say that I do right now, but it is a long road back and I have to be patient with my recovery.
The Australian Open is the first Grand Slam of the tennis season and the 2021 tournament had originally been scheduled to start in Melbourne on 18 January.
However, COVID-19 quarantine rules in Australia at the moment mean players are unlikely to be allowed to enter the state of Victoria until the end of December.
An announcement confirming the rearranged tournament dates should come soon, and it would be great to see Federer play a part if possible.
The Swiss has been one of the all-time greats of tennis and all neutrals will surely hope he can fully recover from his injury setbacks this year.