Roger Federer: 12 Things You Didn’t Know Yet

Roger Federer (Copyright: Valerie David)
Roger Federer (Copyright: Valerie David)

1. At the age of 13, Roger Federer took the entrance examination to “Tennis Etudes”, a development program for young players organized by Swiss Tennis. The examiners back then attested him “a natural talent as well as basic technique without any major deficiencies“. Although they also criticized him for some physical deficits, he still passed the exam.

2. Roger used to be a vegetarian when he was a child and during much of his youth and only started to eat meat when he was 14. He claims that he likes to eat “anything” nowadays.

3. Roger Federer was not Switzerland’s most prominent figure on the internet in 2012. Singer Luca Hänni, who won a German talent show last year, stole the scene from him: In a Google search, Federer came in 7th, ranked even lower than Bastian Baker, a singer from the French-speaking part of Switzerland and a good friend of Stanislas Wawrinka.

4. Mirka and Roger became a couple during the Olympic Games in Sydney in 2000. They had met shortly before that during a training session in Bienne. Thinking back on those days, Mirka says: „He was singing Backstreet Boys songs at the top of his voice. I already liked him then.”

5. Federer has been inviting Bob and Diana Carter to the Australian Open since 2005 and has been paying all expenses for these trips. Their son Peter, who had been Federer’s most influential coach during his time as a junior player, died in a car accident in South Africa in 2002.

6. Roger’s sister Diana also is a mother of twins – Federer became a “double” uncle in September 2010.

7. As a junior player, Federer got chucked out of training early again and again, mainly just before the weekend. “It’s no secret that I was sometimes glad to get kicked out of training in Ecublens on Friday afternoons and get to take an earlier train home. Not that I really pushed for it, but I was happy whenever this happened. “

8. After winning the Orange Bowl versus Guillermo Coria in 1998, Federer stuck some adhesive tape with the words “the no. 1 lives here!” onto his front door.

9. “King Roger”, “FedExpress” or simply “Fedi”: Both fans and journalists have plenty of nicknames for Roger Federer. And his family also uses terms of endearment: Whereas his dad Robert lovingly calls him “Rogi” (“Rochi”), Roger usually calls Mirka “Pipeli”.

10. Federer prefers to play as either Rafael Nadal or Gaël Monfils on the Playstation – but he sometimes also chooses himself.

11. If Federer had to share a flat with any other players on the ATP tour he would pick his Davis Cup team members as roommates.

12. Federer is scared of bungee jumping, parachuting and roller-coaster rides.

(Sources: “Schweizer Illustrierte“ magazine, the book “Years of Glory” and the Swiss tennis magazine “Smash”)