Roger Federer loses Wimbledon warm-up to Felix Auger-Aliassime in Halle
Federer, the 20-time Grand Slam champion from Switzerland, was a second-round
casualty in Germany, falling to Canada’s Felix Auger-Aliassime.
The 39-year-old led by a set before Auger-Aliassime – who was born on the same day as
Federer, albeit 19 years later – clawed his way back into the tie before dominating the
third set. It was the biggest age gap Federer – a 10-time winner of the Noventi Open –
has faced in his 1,521 career matches but he suffered a first defeat in 33 matches in the
first and second rounds at the grass-court event after an hour and 45 minutes.
Federer usually whizzes straight to press after a defeat but it took him more than two
hours to arrive at his post-match conference and he admitted he had to calm down before
publicly analyzing the match.
‘Today I felt I needed time,’ said Federer. ‘I needed time to digest. The third set, I was
unhappy about how it ended. You know, similar to Geneva and in some ways where
I felt like I played actually good in spells but it was up and down.
‘I’d rather keep it simple and short in the press today. I’d rather take my time coming
into the press and not just doing it sweaty, heated. Not sure what I’m going to say and
just, you know, say wrong things to you guys.
‘So that’s the reasons and I mean it was good moments and bad moments in that match
so it’s a bit up and down but that’s, I guess, part of the comeback.
‘I thought the first it was really good actually. The second set was okay. I guess I got
disappointed in myself that you know, I was allowing the points to be played the way
they were being played and, obviously, he was serving well in spells.
‘I think I was able to actually return better again also through a period of time but then
In the end things went very quickly but it had a lot to do, I believe, with where I was at
‘I just think the consistency of point for point has not been easy for me, since in the in
the comeback and I knew that that’s what it’s going to take time.
‘But, again, the good thing coming out of a match like this against a great player, is that I
know what I need to think about, you know, moving forward, because clearly I need to do
a bit better.
‘Overall, I thought also Felix played a great match. He stayed mentally very solid.
He showed that he wanted to win and he was better at the end so maybe it would not
have made much difference to how I would have played that he would have still got me
‘And Halle can be tough to play. You know I’ve always struggled here in the early rounds
sometimes because baseline rallies are tough to blame. You got to be very focused,
committed, and sharp and I was not that anymore in the third set.’
Federer cut a figure of frustration during the decider and he was unhappy with his body
language on court.
‘No, was not a good attitude from my side, I was disappointed in the way I was feeling on
court, the way things were going,’ he added.