Roger Federer may have helped introduce a whole generation of new tennis players to the game, but has revealed getting his own kids to pick up a racket has been a ‘struggle’.
Federer is undoubtedly one of the most popular sport stars of all-time and, with the help of Rafael Nadal, have ushered in fans across the world to take up the game due to their popularity.
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But despite his epic rivalry with Nadal, and Novak Djokovic, Federer said it hasn’t been easy for Mirka and himself to introduce tennis to his four children.
“I have struggled with my children. I have tried to promote tennis at my household with playing a lot of matches against Rafa, Novak and everybody but my kids don’t care,” he said during a television interview with ON.
“They need daddy home from the practice or from the matches. We tried to put a racket in their hand and a ball in the other and see what happens.
“You see very quickly if kids like to play with the ball or go running outside. I think you see the differences very quickly.”
Federer did admit the kids have taken up the game, but it took persistence.
“Now all four kids play tennis. Because I don’t want to be the guy whose kids don’t play tennis. especially not with my background and my wife’s background,” he added.
“But what can you do honestly? You can just go out there and try it time and time again.”
Federer hints at playing future
The 38-year-old, who has undergone two knee surgeries this year, had already announced he will not play again until next year.
This week was scheduled to be the second week of Wimbledon, where Federer has won a record eight men’s singles titles, but the tournament was cancelled for the first time since World War II due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Mirka Federer, wife of Roger Federer, with their children nine-year-old twin girls Charlene and Myla and five-year-old boys Lenny and Leo during Wimbledon.
Mirka Federer, wife of Roger Federer, with their children nine-year-old twin girls Charlene and Myla and five-year-old boys Lenny and Leo during Wimbledon. (Photo by Tim Clayton/Corbis via Getty Images)
“Personally, it has been very pleasant to stay in the same place for a long time, I hadn’t experienced that for more than 25 years,” Federer said at the launch of the “Roger Center Court” running shoes created by Swiss brand On.