Flashback: Federer's Laver Cup Farewell With Nadal
The Swiss legend returned to the court one final time to team with his longtime friend and rival Rafael Nadal, treating fans to one last glimpse of his majestic game. Following a memorable doubles match against Jack Sock and Frances Tiafoe, which was decided in a Match Tie-break, Federer was celebrated in an on-court ceremony.
"We'll get through this somehow, will we? Right?,” an emotional Federer said during his on-court interview. “I’m happy, I’m not sad. It feels great to be here and I enjoyed tying my shoes one more time.
"Everything was the last time. The match was great, I couldn't be happier. It's been wonderful."
The former World No. 1 spoke at length, reflecting on his history-making career and thanking all those who played a part in his successes throughout the years.
Federer decided to take his final bow at Laver Cup, an event he co-founded and also competed in four times, lifting the trophy with Team Europe in its first three editions from 2017-19. He wanted his farewell to be a celebration, grounded more in joy for the journey than in sadness for its end. And while few will forget the tears shed, particularly those by Federer and Nadal after their match, the overriding emotion was one of gratitude — both from the Swiss star and the fans who were privileged enough to witness his extraordinary career.
"It does feel like a celebration to me," Federer said after his final match. "I wanted to feel like this at the end, and it's exactly what I hoped for, so thank you."
Sharing in the celebrations were the 22-time Grand Slam champion's teammates on Team Europe, as well as his opponents from Team World.
“When Roger leaves the Tour, an important part of my life is leaving too," said Nadal, "because all the moments that he has been next to or in front of me [for] are important moments of my life.”
While Federer has left the competition of the ATP Tour, the Swiss remains an integral part of the tennis landscape. He was honoured at Wimbledon on Centre Court earlier this season, and he has again been recognised at the Laver Cup in Vancouver. To celebrate the one-year anniversary of his farewell, Federer performed the coin toss ahead of the final match on Day 1 of the event on Friday.
Following the evening's play, Federer returned to the court for an interview with former World No. 1 Jim Courier — who was the first person to interview Federer after his final match last year in London.