Mubadala event organisers eager to lure Roger Federer back in future

Roger Federer celebrates at ATP Finals

Roger Federer will once again be absent from this year’s Mubadala World Tennis Championship, but organisers have not given up hope that he will return “one day”.

The 20-time Grand Slam winner last played in the Abu Dhabi tournament in 2011 as he used the event to prepare for the season ahead.

The 37-year-old, though, has in recent years opted to start his season in Australia and he will again do so in 2019 as he will compete in the Hopman Cup Down Under.

However, Mubadala Championship Tournament Director Vickie Gunnarsson says they hope to lure him back to Abu Dhabi and denied suggestions the Swiss doesn’t want to play in the event because of his split with IMG.

“Roger Federer is a good friend of IMG,” he told Tennis World USA.

“He has always been. He loved playing in Abu Dhabi, but it does not fit to his schedule. Hopefully we will have him back here one day.”

Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic will be the headline acts at this year’s tournament, which starts on December 27, and Gunnarsson is confident Nadal will be fit despite his recent injury problems.

“Rafa is committed to play in Abu Dhabi. He uses this event as a warm-up for the rest of the season,” he added.

“He is on the right track, he will be on court in December. His agent (Carlos Costa) told me that he is committed to play in Abu Dhabi.”

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