According to a report from Swiss tennis writer Rene Stauffer, Roger Federer, the world No. 3 player will skip Masters events in Madrid and Rome.
Federer won’t be able to go for his first Masters title in Rome this spring or for his third clay Masters title in Madrid. Well-connected Swiss tennis writer Rene Stauffer said that the 38-year-old tennis star will only play one tournament on clay this year: Roland Garros.
“Just got the confirmation from Tony Godsick that rumours are not true that @rogerfederer will play Masters-Tournaments in Rome and Madrid 2020. Probably only Roland Garros on clay”
Federer has made significant changes to his clay court schedule since 2017. That year he skipped the entire clay court season, including Roland Garros.
The Swiss tennis star did the same in 2018 but he competed in Madrid, Rome and Paris last year. He would reach the quarterfinals of both Masters tournaments and the semifinals of Roland Garros in his first appearance on the event since 2015 (he didn’t play in the 2016 French Open because of an injury). Last year Rafael Nadal improved to 6-0 against Federer at Roland Garros with a 6-3, 6-4, 6-2 win.
Federer’s only clay court Masters titles came on Madrid (which was previously in Hamburg). He has won Masters in clay courts six times. He was victorious in Hamburg from 2002 to 2007. The 2007 2-6, 6-2, 6-0 win over Rafael Nadal ended an 81-match unbeaten streak on clay courts by the Spaniard.
Since the event “became” Madrid in 2009, Federer has won it twice. First in the inaugural edition in 2009 and then in 2012 on blue clay. Both times against Nadal.
The Rome Masters hasn’t been so kind to him, he’s had just deep runs there. He reached the final four times (2003, 2006, 2013 and 2015) but lost to Felix Mantilla (2003), Nadal (2006 and 2013) and Novak Djokovic (2015).
Roger Federer recently lost to Djokovic in straight sets in the Australian Open semifinal and this is what he said when asked if he can win another major.
“Yes,” he replied, “I do believe that. I think by having the year that I had last year, also with what I have in my game, how I’m playing, I do feel that.”
Federer was also asked if Wimbledon would be his best shot at winning another Grand Slam. (He’s won the event eight times).
“Probably Basel or Halle,” he answered and smiled. “Less matches to play.”
While Federer will enter grass court season with plenty of time to rest, he will have two less opportunities to win titles.