Roger Federer biography
Born on August 8, 1981, Roger Federer was among the Top 3 junior tennis players in Switzerland by the age of 11. He turned pro in 1998, and knocked out reigning champion Pete Sampras in the fourth round at Wimbledon 2001. Federer became the first Swiss man to win a Grand Slam title, when he won the Wimbledon 2003 singles. In 2004, he won the Australian Open, the U.S. Open and the ATP Masters, and retained the Wimbledon singles title. He also moved from the No. 2. spot to No. 1. In 2006, he won the Australian Open, his fourth successive Wimbledon singles title and his third successive U.S. Open. Federer held the No. 1 ranking from 2004 to 2008, regaining it in 2009—and several times thereafter, after frequent pushes by such rivals as Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. In 2012, Federer defeated Djokovic in the Wimbledon semifinals, and beat Andy Murray to become the Wimbledon 2012 champion—Federer's seventh Wimbledon win. The victory helped Federer regain the No. 1 spot, and tie the world No. 1 ranking record of 286 weeks (set by Pete Sampras).
Tennis star Roger Federer was born on August 8, 1981 in Basel, Switzerland, to Swiss father Robert Federer and South-African mother Lynette Du Rand. Federer's parents met while on a business trip for a pharmaceutical company, where they both worked.
Federer took an interest in sports at an early age, playing tennis and soccer at the age of 8. The young athlete excelled at athletics, and by age 11, he was among the Top 3 junior tennis players in Switzerland. At the age of 12, he decided to quit other sports and focus all his efforts on tennis, which he felt he excelled at more naturally. By the age of 14, he was fully immersed in the game, playing 2-3 tournaments per month, and practicing six hours of the game a week, along with up to three hours of conditioning. To perfect his technique, he often imitated his idols, Boris Becker and Stefan Edberg.
At age 14, Federer became the national junior champion in Switzerland, and was chosen to train at the Swiss National Tennis Center in Ecublens, and had his his first sponsorship by the age of 16. He joined the International Tennis Federation junior tennis circuit in July 1996. In 1998, shortly before he turned pro, Federer won the junior Wimbledon title and the Orange Bowl. He was recognized as the ITF World Junior Tennis champion of the year.
Federer won the Wimbledon boys' singles and doubles titles in 1998, and turned professional later that year. At Wimbledon 2001, he caused a sensation by knocking out reigning singles champion Pete Sampras in the fourth round. In 2003, following a successful season on grass, Federer became the first Swiss man to win a Grand Slam title when he became a Wimbledon singles champion.
At the beginning of 2004, Federer had a world ranking of No. 2, and that same year, he won the Australian Open, the U.S. Open, the ATP Masters and retained the Wimbledon singles title. He was ranked No.
1 at the start of 2005, and his successes that year include the Wimbledon singles title (for a third successive year) and the U.S. Open.
Federer held on to his No. 1 ranking from 2004 to 2008. In 2006, he won the Australian Open, his fourth successive Wimbledon singles title and his third successive U.S. Open. Continuing to dominate the sport, the right-handed champion won the singles title at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open again as well as the Australian Open in 2007. While ranked No. 1 on the ATP Tour, Federer was named Laureus World Sportsman of the Year Award three times, in 2005, 2006 and 2007.
In 2008, Federer beat Scottish player Andy Murray at the U.S. Open—his fifth U.S. Open win. However, that year proved to be a difficult time in Federer's career: he lost to longtime rival Rafael Nadal at both the French Open and Wimbledon, and lost to another rival, tennis star Novak Djokovic, at the 2008 Australian Open. His ranking also slid to No. 2. Federer was in the finals for a sixth U.S. Open win in 2009, and with the option of victory came the possibility of breaking several records, but lost to Juan Martin del Potro.
After regaining the No. 1 ranking in 2009, Rafael Nadal took over as No. 1 in 2010—this back-and-forth ranking designation between the two rivals has spanned the better part of a decade, and, in recent years, such tennis stars as Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray have been thrown into the top-ranking mix. Later in 2010, Federer lost to Djokovic in the U.S. Open semifinal. He then finished the year with a win, against Nadal, at the ATP World Tour year-end championships.
In 2011, Federer won his 18th Masters Series tournament, and won his first Paris Masters, with a vicotry against French tennis pro Jo-Wilfried Tsonga. That same year, he beat 2009 U.S. Open champion Juan Martin del Potro, and went on to defeat Andy Murray at the Dubai Open.
Federer's career escalated once again in 2012, when he defeated defending champion Novak Djokovic in the Wimbledon semifinals, and went on to beat Andy Murray in the Wimbledon finals—Federer's seventh Wimbledon victory. The Wimbledon 2012 win helped the 30-year-old tennis star regain the No. 1 spot, and tie the world No. 1 ranking record of 286 weeks (set by Pete Sampras).
That September, however, Federer made a disappointing showing at the U.S. Open. He lost to Tomas Berdych in the quarterfinals. According to his website, Federer failed to find his groove during the match. "So many moments, I thought, ‘Man, it’s just not happening for me.'" Despite not making the semifinals at the U.S. Open for the first time since 2003, Federer was able to hold on to his number-one ranking.
In 2009, Federer married Mirka Vavrinec, a former professional tennis player. That July, the couple became the parents of identical twin girls, Myla and Charlene. Federer lives with his family in Oberwil, Switzerland.
In 2003, Federer established the Roger Federer Foundation, which helps provide grants to poor countries that have child mortality rates of more than 15 percent, for education- and sports-related projects, among others.