Why Tennis Champion Roger Federer Is Withdrawing From the Tokyo Olympics

Roger Federer broke some unfortunate news to fans on Tuesday, July 13: He's not going to Tokyo after all. Keep reading for more about the tennis icon's unexpected exit from the 2020 Olympics.

By Samantha Schnurr Jul 13, 2021 6:20 PMTags
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For fans, Roger Federer's latest announcement might feel like a grand slam...to the chest.

On Tuesday, July 13, the esteemed tennis pro announced he is no longer headed to Tokyo for the postponed summer games. "During the grass court season, I unfortunately experienced a setback with my knee, and have accepted that I must withdraw from the Tokyo Olympic Games," he explained in a statement. "I am greatly disappointed, as it has been an honor and highlight of my career each time I have represented Switzerland."

However, Federer made clear that this is not the end of the road for his tennis career. "I have already begun rehabilitation," he continued, "in the hopes of returning to the tour later this summer."

The 39-year-old father of four concluded his announcement on a positive note: "I wish the entire Swiss team the best of luck and I will be rooting hard from afar. As always, Hopp Schwiz."

2021 Summer Olympics Status Check

Federer recently competed at Wimbledon, where he became the oldest man to reach the quarterfinals in the Open era. However, he lost to Hubert Hurkacz in straight sets. He unfortunately isn't the only tennis star to suffer an injury with a significant effect as of late. 

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In June, Serena Williams' time at Wimbledon was unexpectedly cut short. She retired from the tournament in the first round after suffering an injury during her first set against Aliaksandra Sasnovich. "I was heartbroken to have to withdraw today after injuring my right leg," Williams later wrote on Instagram. "My love and gratitude are with the fans and the team who make being on centre court so meaningful. Feeling the extraordinary warmth and support of the crowd today when I walked on - and off - the court meant the world to me."

Judging from the comments online, Federer, too, has the support of his devoted fans showering him with well wishes. As a tweet from the official Olympics account read, "You'll be missed, get well soon Roger!"