Federer retires: Bartoli feeling 'sense of sadness' as 20-time major winner calls time on career

By Sports Desk September 15, 2022

Marion Bartoli says she feels "a sense of sadness" after Roger Federer announced his retirement from tennis, just weeks after Serena Williams' grand slam swansong.

Federer – a 20-time major champion – revealed on Thursday that he had made the "bittersweet decision" to end his glittering career, with next week's Laver Cup being his farewell tournament.

The announcement comes just over two weeks after Williams made her final slam appearance at the US Open, and 2017 Wimbledon champion Bartoli believes it represents "the end of an era" for the sport. 

When asked for her reaction, Bartoli told Stats Perform: "A sense of sadness, obviously, because we lost in the space of two weeks Serena [Williams] and Roger Federer who are basically two of the biggest stars that ever played the game, and two of the greatest who have ever played the game.

"I sense it was the end of an era almost because they have been part of my journey. When I was playing, Roger was obviously at his peak winning a lot of things and then Serena as well and now coming to see both of them taking their retirement almost at the same time.

"I feel like that book is almost closed, and now we are moving to the new generation of players with Carlos Alcaraz and all of them, but Novak [Djokovic] and Rafa [Nadal] are still hanging on.

"A sense of sadness obviously, but then completely understand his decision from what he had to face in the past three years."

Bartoli, who was also runner-up at the All England Club in 2007, thinks there are many players capable of challenging for the major titles in years to come.

Although, she does not see any player dominating tennis in the same manner as the 'Big Three' in Federer, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal.

"I think our Alcaraz will very much be in the mix, but I don't think we will see one player being at 20 grand slams in 15 or 20 years, I don't believe it," she said.

"I think those three have been more than even superhuman. They've brought tennis to a level of consistency that, and along with Serena as well, I don't think anyone will be able to replicate that.

"When you see Carlos, he had an amazing US Open, just an incredible achievement. But Novak was not there, Rafa was injured, Roger doesn't play anymore, [Stefanos] Tsitsipas lost in the first round, [Alexander] Zverev can't play.

"It's just a lot of circumstances, and he had to save two match points against [Jannik] Sinner. So I don't see him dominating tennis as Roger did, or Novak did or Rafa did for the next 20 years, I just don't see it. 

"I think that the level between each other, it's very close. You don't see a major gap. So I think we'll have maybe Carlos winning one and then Sinner winning one, Zverev finally winning one and then Medvedev winning more.

"It's just going to keep rotating between maybe five or six names, but I don't think will be one name that keeps winning everything."

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