Braving the crowds to get a glimpse of the master

Tennis: Watching Roger Federer train for the Roland Garros.

By ALLON SINAI IN PARIS
May 24, 2010 16:51
1 minute read.
Roger Federer at Rome

federer 311. (photo credit: Andrew Medichin/APi)

Watching Roger Federer train for his first round match at Roland Garros on Sunday left me feeling many things, including a mild case of back pain.

Hundreds, almost thousands, of tennis fans flocked to Court 18 in the early afternoon to watch Federer train with Juan Carlos Ferrero rather than attending one of the many matches which were being played at the other outside courts.

Any hope of catching a glimpse of the Swiss master applying his trade required the onlookers to do their best contortionist impression, leaving many, including yours truly, with aches and pains.

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However, the herds cramming every open space beside the small court couldn’t care less about the inevitable soreness.

After all, that was a small price to pay to watch their idol first hand, seeing with their own eyes the reason Federer has become such a fan favorite.

While no one was surprised with the meticulous fashion with which the world number 1 prepares for matches, almost all were very impressed to see the sheer joy Federer got from simply hitting the ball in training.

Some players may play the game to bring financial relief to their families, while others have their mind set on fame and glory.

For Federer, such things are almost insignificant. He plays with the enthusiasm of a beginner, enjoying everything about the sport.

Tennis has always been and, always will be, simply a game for Federer. Not a profession and not a way to make ends meet, just a game.

His infectious enthusiasm for the sport is what makes him so compelling.

Grand Slam final or ordinary training session, Federer will always remain his sport’s biggest draw, for he loves the game as much as the fans and they know it.


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