“Dear Fans,

I’m extremely disappointed to announce that I will not be able to represent Switzerland at the Olympic Games in Rio and that I will also miss the remainder of the season. Considering all options after consulting with my doctors and my team, I have made the very difficult decision to call an end to my 2016 season as I need more extensive rehabilitation following my knee surgery earlier this year. The doctors advised that if I want to play on the ATP World Tour injury free for another few years, as I intend to do, I must give both my knee and body the proper time to fully recover. It is tough to miss the rest of the year. However, the silver lining is that this experience has made me realize how lucky I have been throughout my career with very few injuries. The love I have for tennis, the competition, tournaments and of course you, the fans remains intact. I am as motivated as ever and plan to put all my energy towards coming back strong, healthy and in shape to play attacking tennis in 2017.

 

Thanks for your continued support.

Roger”

 

It hasn’t been more than 24 hours since Federer wrote the above letter for his millions of fans around the world, and it has already resulted in pandemonium for a large chunk of them. Federer, the legend that he is, has one of the most loyal fan bases, not just in tennis, but in all sports combined. The kind of connection that Federer has enjoyed with his fans throughout his career cannot be put into words. His calm demeanour, classy backhands and electrifying persona are few traits that have really cemented the affinity his fans have for him. Tennis greats come and go, but the love that fans have world-over for Federer cannot be overemphasized, which is why this news has resulted in a lot of people getting disheartened about the remaining season, and the remaining career of the former no. 1.

Federer has been struggling for the past couple of years, no doubt about it. His last grand slam victory came back in 2012, and he’s 34 years of age already. True, he’s made it to a lot of finals and semi-finals in the interim, but he’s always fallen short. I believe I’m speaking for all of Federer’s loyal fans out there, all we want is to see him lift the Wimbledon trophy one last time, but his recent injury has made that dream seem even more far-fetched than it did earlier.

Injuries are a part and parcel of any sportsman’s life, and Federer has had quite a few problems with both his knee and his back over the last 5 years. One thing is certain though. Federer won’t give in without a fight. If we’re hungry, he’s hungrier. And we can rest assured, he will be back, he will fight, and he will be Wimbledon champion again.

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