Hey guys, whilst most people spend time relaxing over Christmas it looks like Roger has been plotting ahead of the 2014 season as he's just announced on Facebook that his childhood hero, Stefan Edberg, will be coaching him for at least 10 weeks whilst they are in Australia.
Personally I think this is a great move from Federer as Edberg was not only one of the best serve and volleyers of all time, he also played the sort of tennis that you feel Roger must play too if he's to compete for titles / slams again. Roger used to idolise him growing up too so there should be a lot of mutual respect.
I'm not sure what made him make the decision but I'd guess it was a combination of their sessions in Dubai going well and also the fact that Becker has now teamed up with Djokovic.
Becker and Edberg are both tied on 6 slams so you can't really separate them too much but which one of them will get the most out of their player? Interesting times ahead that's for sure.
I think it also has an added dimension because Edberg and Becker were big rivals on tour, so this almost makes it personal as they are both now entering the realm of coaching. It's going to be competitive between them just like it was on tour; Becker leads the H2H 25-10 but Edberg won 3 out of their 4 meetings in Grand Slams. Tasty!
New Racquet Confirmed for Australia
There's more good news on the racquet front too as Federer has also confirmed that he will be using the new Wilson prototype from Gstaad / Hamburg in both Australian tournaments meaning Brisbane and the Australian Open. He revealed this in an interview yesterday with his local paper the Baseler Zeitung, you can check that out here, it's written in German – http://bazonline.ch/sport/tennis/Ich-bin-ein-interessanter-Spieler-zum-Coachen/story/20766569 so will require Google translate if you don't speak it / read it.
I have translated the relevant question below:
Q. In the summer you stopped playing with a larger racquet after the early exit in Gstaad. Now you have again tested the new model in practise. Will you be using it on the tour?
Yeah, I'm going to play in Australia with a similar model as last summer. Actually, I wanted to carry on testing right after the U.S. Open again. But then I had so much on my plate and my game, that I stuck with the old one. Now I have had more time to still make further small changes and to speak to Wilson with regards to changes…. But now I have the feeling that now is the right time for a change. I've played two and a half weeks with the new model and I am confident. The racket suits me very well in the hand. But the proof will be on court. We will see in the tournaments in Australia how it goes.
Boom! All sounds good to me. Obviously like Roger says the proof is in the pudding but I think this is definitely the right move and should give him more power, better returns and that little bit more margin for error.
From the interview it sounds like Roger has fine tuned the racquet to his own specifications after trialing it and now Wilson have implemented those into his new frame.
Looks like things are coming together nicely for Roger at the moment, he's injury free, has a new coach, will be using a new racquet and of course has another baby on the way which he confirmed on Christmas eve. Allez!