Roger Federer’s father reveals new favourite player he finds ‘beautiful’ to watch
Roger Federer’s father Robert has divulged that he finds Ben Shelton “beautiful” to watch and said the rising star is his “new favourite” player following his son’s retirement.
The Swiss also explained that he still deals with “a huge pile of fan mail” sent for his son and that this has not diminished despite the tennis legend retiring.
Shelton is managed by Federer’s TEAM8 agency and wears shoes and clothing made by shoe brand On – which is backed by the Swiss – when competing on court.
The 21-year-old has made an impressive breakthrough this year in his first full season on the ATP Tour, having turned pro in 2022.
The American reached the quarter-finals of the Australian Open, semi-finals of the US Open and won his maiden ATP title at the Japan Open in Tokyo last month. Shelton, who did not win back-to-back tour matches between his big two runs at the hard-court Majors, finished the year with a 26-24 record.
The young talent is currently ranked 17th in the world, having touched a career-high position of 15 last month after his ATP 500 triumph in Tokyo.
Swiss company On, of which Roger Federer is one of the major shareholders, has announced the signing of world no. 1 Iga Swiatek, Ben Shelton and 16-year-old João Fonseca.
Roger said: “They demonstrate On’s competitive spirit and embody current and future champions of the sport”. pic.twitter.com/nVnNDVKiuj
— Relevant Tennis (@RelevantTennis) March 20, 2023
In a recent interview with Gazzetta dello Sport, Shelton discussed the ‘Big 3’ and revealed Federer is the player he has always admired most.
“I studied [Rafael] Nadal and tried to steal some secrets from him. But my favourite has always been Roger. Novak Djokovic? In three years he will still be a top five, he will still win tournaments,” said the American.
Speaking in an interview with Blick, Robert Federer hailed Shelton and also praised his entourage, including his parents.
“Wow, it’s just beautiful to look at him. I’m a big fan of his. It’s my new favourite. I am always also interested in how the parents behave,” declared the 77-year-old.
The Swiss also illustrated that the huge and passionate following Federer built during his 24-year career has not declined since he hung up his racket.
“I still deal with a huge pile of fan mail. You would think this would diminish after Roger retired. But this is not the case,” said Robert Federer.
Federer called time on his incredible career after the 2022 Laver Cup, partnering friend and rival Rafael Nadal in doubles for his final match.
The Swiss reached the quarter-finals of Wimbledon in 2021 in the final singles tournament of his career, losing to Hubert Hurkacz in his last match. The 42-year-old won his 20th and final Grand Slam crown at the 2018 Australian Open and his 103rd and last ATP title at the 2019 Swiss Indoors in Basel – his home tournament.
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