Practice Makes Perfect - even for Roger Federer

Some geniuses are born. Some geniuses are made. Other geniuses just need a little bit of practice.

Roger Federer, although contrary to popular belief, admitted that he fell into the third category. Federer had a shocking third round defeat to Japan’s Kei Nishikori in the Madrid Open last week. His fans in Madrid would have found that defeat oddly surprising since Federer won the same tournament last year, and was defending the title this year. But the past is past, and Federer did say that the reason for his poor show was a lack of practice.


Roger Federer at Rome 2013

But losing in the third round may not always be a bad thing for champions like Federer. The early loss in Madrid gave Federer time to recover. He arrived at Rome a couple of days earlier and took time to do the thing he missed out on in Madrid - practice. Of course, he also had a little extra time in his bag which he spent valuably in an interview. Here is what he had to say:

“I’ve been practising well and I’m really hungry and motivated to play again. I hope I can play a good tournament here. That’s really important for me. But first things first, I want to start well.”

And start well he did. Federer crushed Italian wild card entry Polito Starace 6-1 6-2 in his first match in Rome. Quite clearly Roger has been practising hard in between the two tournaments. Federer would be rather pleased with this start because like everyone knows, a good start makes for a good finish. A good finish would be the only thing running through Federer’s mind right now. He has come to Rome 13 times but he has never lifted the trophy here. Not once. That should make the champion a little more desperate this week. He wouldn’t want to miss clipping any more feathers onto his hat.

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