Former top 10 player explains why Roger Federer needs to brush up on his baseline game for Wimbledon

Grand Slam
Roger Federer playing from the baseline

Former ATP top 10 player Marc Rosset believes Roger Federer’s decision to compete on clay this year will boost his physical preparation and help him to fine-tune his baseline game for Wimbledon.

After more than a year on the sidelines following two knee operations, Federer made his return to competitive tennis at the Qatar Open, reaching the second round before falling to Nikoloz Basilashvili.

He was then set to compete at the Dubai Tennis Championships last week, but opted to withdraw “to go back to training” while he had previously decided against defending his Miami Open title.

The 20-time Grand Slam winner is expected to play the clay-court season, which starts on April 5 and culminates in the French Open on May 24 before switching to grass with the main aim to win a ninth Wimbledon title.

His compatriot Rosset, who won 15 ATP titles and reached a career-high of No 9 in the rankings, says a long stint on clay will boost Federer’s Wimbledon chances.

“Roger Federer saw that maybe he was lacking a bit of physical preparation,” he told L’Equipe.

“So I think it’s going to be interesting for him to really play as many matches as possible on clay.”

He added: “[Playing on clay] will allow him to do a little land work, to get a bit of a physical shape.

“Wimbledon is hardly won anymore by serving-and-volleying, it is won from the baseline.

“If he also wants to win Wimbledon, he will necessarily have to beat [Novak] Djokovic, [Rafael] Nadal or other players who are in the top 10.

“And to meet them [beforehand], he will have to play these players in the Masters 1000 on clay or at Roland Garros.”

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