Former coach highlights key similarity between Roger Federer and Pete Sampras

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Roger Federer in full flow

Paul Annacone believes Roger Federer’s ability to play at a high level without putting too much strain on his body is one of the main reasons for his longevity.

The 20-time Grand Slam winner turns 40 in August, but he admitted in recent months that he is not thinking about retirement just yet as he wants to compete at Wimbledon this year and the Tokyo Olympics.

Federer, though, is currently nursing his way back after spending more than a year on the sidelines following two knee operations.

He made his comeback at the Qatar Open at the beginning for March, falling in the second round, but has decided to take some time out again to work on his fitness.

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Annacone, who was part of Federer’s coaching set-up from 2010 to 2013, put the veteran’s longevity down to his ability to reach top gear without wasting too much energy, something that fellow great Pete Sampras also managed to do during his playing days.

“It doesn’t take a ton out of them [Federer and Sampras] to play at levels most players can’t even reach,” he told the Washington Post.

“When you add [Federer’s] pragmatic approach, the rollercoaster of emotions tied to winning and losing tends not to surface in his life. He is pretty steady.”

He also hailed the Swiss’ temperament, adding: “He loves the game of tennis and enjoys the environment. He has been at the top of the game for many years, and he accepts and enjoys the responsibility of being ‘Roger Federer’ — that sounds easy, but it is not.”

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