Roger Federer is out to prove that reports of his demise are unfounded.
The Australian-based website, theage.com.au, reported today that the 32-year-old Swiss tennis star thinks he can add to his 17 Grand Slam championships in 2014.
“I always believe that I have improved over the last 10 years, you know, that I’ve not gone backwards, and I’ve been able to win (the Open) 10 years ago, so I always feel as I move forward I am a more complete player, a better player,” Federer said in a Friday teleconference to promote a Jan. 8 charity event in Rod Laver Arena in Brisbane, Australia. “That’s why I will always believe that I can win, as long as my body is holding up and mentally I’m really hungry travelling the world and playing matches, and that is the case right now – I’m very healthy and training extremely hard.”
Federer finished 2013 without making an appearance in a Grand Slam final for the first time since 2002. His ranking dropped to sixth by season’s end, just one year after he regained the No. 1 ranking in the world.
He says injury curtailed his performances last season, more so than Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic.
“Some success has come back also at the end of last year, which is quite important for me, for my confidence, because I was really in a difficult spot from Wimbledon all the way until Basel, I’d say, with just fighting my confidence and then, particularly, also my back issue. I couldn’t really train the way I wanted to for some time, and now it’s really picked up again and I think I’m really moving in the right direction.”
Federer finished 2013 with somewhat of a flourish, winning nine of his last 13 events and reaching the finals of the Swiss Indoors Basel before losing to Juan Martin del Potro in three sets.
The recent play has given Federer some confidence against the top-seeded player at next month’s Australian Open.
“I really hope to be playing my absolute best (there), which I really think is possible, and then anything is possible for me, I personally believe that.
“It’s just important for me that I play better against the top guys. It’s not been bad this year, but I just didn’t land enough wins, so that’s something I want to improve for this year.”
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