It was only two and a half months back that I wrote about him. It was an ode to his supremacy in tennis, sport and life. How he inspires me even in his defeat. He had lost the 2017 ATP semifinals then. In the post match conference, he spoke a language known to champions and luminaries. About living with passion. I had ended the note with a wish and a belief! “let me forget this loss and happily look forward to the 2018 season and in a much bigger perspective – to look forward to writing more, to learning more, to following my passion more with diligence and to living that Federer-esque life”. A wish for a smashing 2018.
And he has indeed begun his year with a smash; claiming his 6th Australian Open title and a record 20th Grand Slam. I am amazed. It’s not over. The magician is simply not finished yet. Australian Open Champion of 2018. Defending a grand slam title at 36 years old. He then astonishes everyone by crying like a baby after receiving the trophy. We cried along. It could sound ridiculous and idealistic when I keep extolling his virtues. But it’s only because I am inspired by him and driven to do much more…To strive for excellence in every endeavor. The joy when I watch him play is beyond words. The experience I undergo when he speaks is profound. He might have arrived at the pinnacle of world sport but has no qualms whatsoever in wearing his emotions on his sleeves. A gifted sports person and a charming man.
A man. Aggression is in his game. But, it’s humility in his character. Integrity in his living. Originality is his godliness. The fire that emanates from his brutal backhand straight down the line doesn’t stop him from expressing his sensitivity off the court. Because, as I see it, Roger Federer doesn’t worry about his image. He can be a man who can rip his opponent on court, congratulate an opponent on his win even in the depth of defeat , respect his woman and be grateful to family, tickle your funny bones and then cry uncontrollably after writing history. That’s what makes him perfect. A legend. It’s mundane to witness a dramatic conclusion to inspiring incidents on the big screen, but to witness that in a live event as the consequence of one person’s charisma, is purely exhilarating; a majestic tennis stadium packed with legends in sport and other streams, rising to a standing ovation and waiting for a human champion to settle his tears. It’s a picture to keep. Forever.
Roger, you’re an example in a million ways. You have just out beaten your own masterclass at a beautiful game. You have added further sheen to your already shimmering persona. And we are certain, there is more to come, as it’s only the beginning of 2018…