It's a strange time for tennis fans. While it's exciting to see new blood sprinting into the sport, like recent French Open finalist Stefanos Tsitsipas, everyone knows we'll be saying goodbye to the Big Four in the next few years.
Roger Federer (39), Rafael Nadal (35), Novak Djokovic (34) and Andy Murray (34) have given us an unforgettable, compelling era of tennis, but they can't go on forever, and many wonder when fitness issues will force them to retire. Of course, in real life they are still young but by sporting standards they are stretching the limits of physical attainment.
Federer may be the first to hang up his racket, being the oldest of the four but he shows no signs of quitting. And why should he, when he regularly beats younger players?
Some think one more Wimbledon victory, on his favourite surface, would be the perfect way to finish a stupendous career. But is Roger likely to announce his retirement this summer after Wimbledon 2021? Keep reading for some answers.
Will Roger retire after Wimbledon 2021?
Biology suggests that Federer, who celebrates his 40th birthday in August, will have to retire soon but he doesn't seem tempted. Talking to GQ in May, he said "I’m really relaxed about where my career is, where my life is. And I know that this [moment] is one last big, huge opportunity for me to do something great.
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"Don’t get me wrong, I want to win more. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have gone through the whole [last] year of surgeries and the process of doing five weeks on crutches and rehab. I truly believe I can do it again. [But] I first have to prove to myself that the body can take it. The mind is ready to go.”
So it would seem that he will play for as long as winning seems humanly possible. Interestingly, British player Arthur Gore did win Wimbledon at the age of 41 but that was in 1909 and he didn't have to face Novak Djokovic or Rafa Nadal!
Of course, we can only make an educated guess, but Federer has always lapped up the theatre of Wimbledon's Centre Court, and enjoys his rivalry with Rafael Nadal. Our suspicion would be that next year's tournament, with a full capacity crowd (this year it's operating at 50 per cent, building up to 100 per cent for the finals) and the possibility of a match against his most tenacious opponent (Nadal has withdrawn from Wimbledon 2021) might prove a better swansong. Plus there's the US Open, Australian Open and French Open before then, which could add to his all-important grand slam tally.
Federer has been a brilliant ambassador for tennis, and fans will be thrilled if he decides to keep playing a little longer.
If you're planning on watching the tournament, you can see the full Wimbledon 2021 TV schedule here.
Does Roger Federer still hold the record for male grand slams?
Yes, Roger Federer currently shares the record with his greatest rival, Rafael Nadal, with both of them winning 20 grand slam titles, more than any other male players in history (Serena Williams has won 23). Novak Djokovic is just behind Roger and Rafa, with his recent French Open win bringing him up to 19 titles.
This may sound like an exercise in number-crunching but actually these stats are vital to the question of when Federer will retire. After a stunning career, he doesn't have much left to prove. But if he could just get a couple more slams under his belt, it might be possible to protect his legacy as the greatest male player of all time. After all, whoever is at the top of this list when Federer, Nadal and Djokovic retire is likely to hold the record for decades.
How many times has Roger Federer won Wimbledon?
Roger has won the Men's Singles title at Wimbledon an incredible eight times, that's more than any other male player. His first victory came in 2003, defeating Mark Philippoussis in straight sets, and he celebrated his most recent win in 2017, beating Marin Cilic without dropping a set. He made the final in 2019 for the 12th time but lost out to Novak Djokovic.
Want more Wimbledon content? We've got you covered - read on to find out what the Wimbledon weather forecast is looking like, who is predicted to become the Wimbledon 2021 winner, who has won Wimbledon the most times, and how does Hawk-Eye work. We also have selected our top Wimbledon facts and figures, and can answer questions like will Andy Murray play at Wimbledon in 2021 or can you still get Wimbledon tickets?
Wimbledon 2021 coverage airs on BBC One and BBC Two from Monday 28th June. To find out what else is on telly, check out our TV Guide.