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Federer: Nadal is 'pumped' for Laver Cup

Andrew Hendrie in News 19 Sep 2019
  • Federer spoke to the media ahead of this weekend's Laver Cup in Geneva
  • Swiss star says Nadal is pumped to represent Team Europe once again
Team Europe (PA Images)

Roger Federer says U.S. Open champion Rafael Nadal is ‘pumped’ to return to action for Team Europe as the 2019 Laver Cup gets underway from Friday in Geneva.

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Players on Team Europe and Team World were welcomed via a public appearance on the balcony of the Palais Eynard, Parc des Bastions on Wednesday afternoon, with Federer and Europe captain Bjorn Borg speaking to media ahead of the Laver Cup’s third edition - and Federer gathering the team for what has predictably turned into a viral selfie.

A couple of days after his coach Severin Luthi declared Federer wasn’t ‘stressed’ about the prospect of Nadal chasing down his Grand Slam title record, the Swiss maestro spoke about the Spaniard and how he’s raring to go in Geneva despite winning the U.S. Open title less than two weeks ago.

“He couldn't be more pumped up for this event,” Federer told reporters. “He just won the US Open. It would have been so easy for him to say, 'Look, I need a break.' But he said, 'No, my break's coming afterwards. I push it all aside, and I'm doing this because I really believe in the concept of the Laver Cup. And I believe in you guys.'”

Federer and Nadal are likely to team up in doubles once more after the pair combined to beat Team World players Sam Querrey and Jack Sock in three sets during the inaugural Laver Cup in Prague in 2017.

Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Rod Laver, and John McEnroe (PA Images)
The two legends practiced doubles together on Wednesday against teammates Alexander Zverev and Fabio Fognini.

“It's been energetic, it's been thrilling, it's been exciting. The two teams have finally clashed and seen each other. We are all ready to go,” Federer added.

Along with Federer, Nadal, Zverev and Fognini, rising star Stefanos Tsitsipas and Roland Garros runner-up Dominic Thiem make up the rest of Team Europe, with all six players ranked in the top 11 in the world.

Meanwhile, by contrast, John Isner is Team World’s highest-ranked player at No. 20, followed by Milos Raonic, Nick Kyrgios, Denis Shapovalov, Jack Sock, Taylor Fritz and Jordan Thompson, who’s come into the team as an alternate.

Despite the lopsided teams in terms of ranking, Federer is anticipating another close battle between the two teams.

“We have incredible depth,” said Federer. “So there you have it. As much as we’re the favourites, I do think it’s going to be extremely tight.
“They’re really good at doubles – Jack (Sock) is one of the world’s best doubles players, if not the absolute best right now – and we know how hard it’s going to be.”

Europe captain Borg is also bracing himself for another tense three days.

“It’s going to be a nerve-wracking competition but I hope anyway that we’re going to try and defend our titles,” said the Swede.
“It’s going to be a very exciting match. Team World has a strong team. In the previous years it’s been two very close matches and I think it’s going to be another close match this year.”

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Federer: Nadal is 'pumped' for Laver Cup

Roger Federer says U.S. Open champion Rafael Nadal is ‘pumped’ to return to action for Team Europe as the 2019 Laver Cup gets underway from Friday in Geneva.

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