World number three, Roger Federer has strongly denied speculations on his retirement as it was perceived that he only competing at the French Open to round off his career.
The 37-year-old will make his first appearance at Roland Garros since 2015 next week, prompting rumours that it is a farewell tour ahead of a planned retirement later this year.
Federer, though, has put the record straight. “I heard this after my announcement in Australia,” Federer told Le Equipe.
“This is not the idea. I made this decision for this year. At my age, with everything going on, I do not know what’s next.”
Another perception on the rumour is that Federer is only using the French Open as a warm up for Wimbledon after he struggled to last the pace at SW19 last year.
And, while Federer doesn’t deny that’s a consideration, he does assert it’s a very minor one.
“Perhaps. But I do not come back for that, it’s the second or third reason that motivated my decision,” he added.
“The first reason was the desire to find the clay, so Roland Garros and spectators.”
By Olukayode Oniwinde