A friend of mine, who was getting married, told me an interesting fact recently: for bachelors, marriage can be looked at in two ways, The end of journey or start of a new journey. As Federer enters the 30’s club, it’s the same case for him. For people, it might seem as end of an era when he lost in Wimbledon Quarter Finals; but for me, it’s the start of a new journey for him. Why? Read on to know the reason.
Life is a sinusoidal curve with ups and downs, highs and lows ready to take us into new paths in life. Historically, there was a time when people thought that Bjorn Borg would go down in the history as the greatest ever. Then Pete Sampras emerged and dominated tennis during 1990′s. When he retired, many regarded him as the greatest. But he was surpassed by Federer in 8 years’ time. He not only surpassed Sampras in Grand Slam titles but is also considered by many as the one who changed the face of tennis with his charming personality. Just when Federer was thought of as invincible, Nadal came knocking on the door with a claim to the throne; and when Nadal was starting to establish his credibility on all type of courts, though too early to say, we might have another claim on the throne in future-Novak Djokovic. Who Knows?
The point here is that no one is invincible in his life. If there is a high in your life, you will also experience the opposite in your career. And that’s the fact of life. So the biggest question is will Federer be back in his career?
Yes. Every good player has a high and which is invariably followed by a low as he advances in his career. The difference between good and great is the ability to bounce back from this dirt. It’s not the age that matters, what matters is the person’s sheer will and determination to continue to move forward. Here are a few examples from history:
1) Rod Laver won 4 Grand Slams after the age of 30.
2) Pete Sampras (seeded 17th at that time) surprised everyone when he won his 14th Grand Slam at the age of 31.
3) Not to mention Ken Rosewall, arguably amongst the five greatest players of all time, won his last Grand Slam title at the age of 37 and after two years reached the Wimbledon Finals.
4) And there are so many others – Jimmy Connors who won US open at the age of 31, Andre Agassi who won Australian Open at the age of 32 etc.
If you look at the greats of the game, they had competition from the likes of John McEnroe, Ivan Lendl, Stefan Edberg, Boris Becker, Jim Courier etc. during their time, but they managed to overcome all the odds successfully.
The simple rationale is – If you think you can, you will.
“I’ve won so much that you feel like if you put yourself in the right position and you do all the right things you’ll definitely get a shot of winning big tournaments.”
“My planning has always been long term. I’m looking forward to how much more I can achieve from this point on.” – Federer.
Here is a champion who has won more Grand Slams than anyone in history. He still believes in himself and knows that he can go that extra mile. For some, it might be the end of his journey but as I see it, it’s the start of a new chapter in his life. A chapter that he wants to write down in the history book as a successful one. He has broken so many records; I won’t be surprised if he goes on to achieve the milestone of winning multiple Grand Slams after the age of 30.
So many greats of the tennis world have done it before, so can Federer!
For me there is no reason at all for Federer fans to panic or think that his era is over. The champion that he is, he will be back soon.