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In Roger Federer’s words: ‘If I don’t win the title this year, I will come back..’

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Roger Federer

At Wimbledon 2003, Roger Federer was ready to finally chase the elusive crown at Majors, playing on a high level and passing the quarter-final obstacle for the first time. Roger lost only one set against Hyung-Taik Lee, Stefan Koubek and Mardy Fish, finding himself in the second week where he toppled Feliciano Lopez despite a severe back injury that almost cost him the opening set and maybe the entire match.

In the quarters, Federer defeated Sjeng Schalken (who was also injured) to set the anticipated clash against Andy Roddick, with two youngsters fighting for the first Major final. Federer was the only player on the court that day, scoring a 7-6, 6-3, 6-3 win in an hour and 43 minutes, fending off a set point in the opening set tie break and never looking back in sets two and three.

Roddick wasted his only two break opportunities at the beginning of the second set. That was almost everything he did on the return, struggling to find the pace and getting broken three times to propel Roger over the finish line.

Blasting 34 service winners and mighty 40 from the field, Federer sprayed only 35 errors to tame his strokes nicely and mount the pressure on the other side of the net that Roddick couldn’t endure. After the match, Roger said this result would give him a lot of confidence, proving he is a Grand Slam material and hoping for more of the same in the final against Mark Philippoussis.

“I still have one more match to play and if I don’t win the title, I will try to come back and win it in the upcoming years. This Wimbledon has shown to me I can fight for the big titles, making the next step as I never played in the semis before.

I knew I could perform well in the best-of-five Davis Cup clashes but you don’t play them that often, especially if you lose early at Majors. This result will give me confidence and experience ahead of the next tournaments; I have won many matches this year, which provides me with an extra boost.”

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