Roger Federer sets record straight on Wimbledon rumours in blunt response to fan
Roger Federer has poured cold water on the possibility of taking up a commentary role at Wimbledon this year, contrary to reports that he is close to agreeing a deal with the BBC to join their coverage of the tournament. Federer has been keeping a low profile since retiring from professional tennis back in September and is yet to decide on his next career move after stepping back from the court.
It was claimed by The Telegraph in February that a deal was on the cards to see Federer return to Wimbledon as a BBC commentator, with the broadcasting giant planning an overhaul following the retirement of Sue Barker from her presenting role last year. However, the man himself has since quashed the speculation by insisting that he has no plans to work at the All England Club in a media capacity.
Federer was taking questions from fans on Twitter on Tuesday night when @mazzy0108 asked: “Any plans to do commentary on TV? Like joining BBC during Wimbledon.” The Swiss icon promptly replied to explain that he does not have any broadcasting commitments for this year but refused to rule out a return to the tournament in future, saying: “No plans to commentate this year!”
It remains to be seen whether Federer will ever go into commentary as he continues to mull over his next move since retiring from tennis, although he would almost certainly be a universal hit with fans at the All England Club. He is arguably the most popular player to have ever taken to the courts in SW19 and his signature would be a major coup for the BBC or any other broadcaster that is lucky enough to snap him up.
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Not every legend makes a great commentator after the end of their playing days, though, with former Nike tennis director Mike Nakajima having already suggested that Federer will likely snub the opportunity to work in broadcasting in order to pursue other business ventures.
“I can’t imagine he will be a commentator; nothing against that, but I’m sure he is thinking about other things,” said Nakajima in an extract from his book, The Roger Federer Effect. “He’s such a savvy guy, if you’re a company, who wouldn’t want somebody like Roger working with you? I think he’ll branch out into other things. And his name will live on forever as one of the best athletes of all time.”
Federer would still undoubtedly be a highly popular addition to the BBC team at Wimbledon if he ever decides to join their ranks, with his voice likely to hold a great deal of credibility with tennis fans across the country given his staggering achievements as a player. He was recently urged to return to the All England Club in some capacity by old friend and current BBC co-commentator Tim Henman, regardless of whether he links up with the broadcaster or chooses to serve as an ambassador for the sport.
“As he said when he announced his retirement, he’s never going to walk away from the game because he loves the game too much and he’s too passionate about the game, but what specifically he ends up doing I don’t know,” Henman told Express Sport last month.
“He’s been an amazing champion in our sport, the most incredible ambassador in our sport and he’s a good friend of mine, so I definitely hope I get to see him a bit more.”
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