Roger Federer says it should be an exciting start to next season as top players like Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic, Stan Wawrinka and others come back from injury.
But Federer, who returned this season from six months off to win the Australian Open, said it’s won’t be that simple to come back and start winning again right away, even though they can all be top players again like him and Rafael Nadal.
Nadal, like Federer, had injury problems in 2016 and this season won two Grand Slams.
“Coming back is always a challenge for the body. It’s a challenge for the team because you got to be extremely patient yet positive,” Federer told press at the ATP Finals, where he fell to David Goffin in the semifinals.
“Not so easy. So I expect obviously from the likes [of] who have been extremely high up in the rankings, who have won Slams—like Stan, Andy and Novak—of course I expect greatness from them … at some stage, not maybe from the very beginning. But I wouldn’t be surprised if it worked out for them as well, like for me. And Rafa.”
Several other injured players are also scheduled to be making comebacks at the beginning of the season. While they have been off the tour, others like Alexander Zverev, Dominic Thiem, Grigor Dimitrov and David Goffin have climbed up the rankings.
“I hope also Kei [Nishikori], Tomas [Berdych] and Milos [Raonic] all find their way back on tour and prefer to be in Australia because that would make it quite epic, a comeback for all the guys,” Federer said.
“Then you mix them together with the new guys from the World Tour Finals who have just come off a great year, obviously are confident, want to stay in the top 10. They are sort of weaving their way in. ‘Not so fast, guys, we also want to make it.’ You have the young guys coming through.
“It could be a very cool start to the year.”