Roger Federer interview by Arthur Pralon for L’Equipe, translated by Tennis Buzz

Q: How the idea of an association with Stefan Edberg was born?
After my split with Paul Annacone (in October), I finished the season with Severin (Lüthi), then he and I, we discussed. We asked ourselves if we needed someone else in the team. Who? Why? How many weeks a year? I only had a few names in mind , and Stefan was one of them.
I really did not think he would be available, because he’s been off the circuit for 15 years. But he is one of my childhood hero so I said: Why not try to contact him. He needed a lot of time to make his decision, he really was not sure of himself! (Laughs.) But he was very flattered and he finally agreed .
He came to Dubai and spent a week all three (with Severin), so that he get an idea of my daily life, because all the top players have their own arrangement. I wanted him to meet my family, my team, so that he feels the most comfortable possible. After that, I asked him again whether he wanted to work with me and he agreed.

Q: How will you organize?
Severin keeps travelling with me most of the time, and Stefan has agreed to accompany me at least ten weeks a year, slightly less than what my former coaches used to do. I’m really glad he could find time for it. I am very excited, and he also, even if he had never imagined to coach someone.

Q: What will he bring to you?
A: I’m sure he can bring a new perspective to my game. I see him more as a source of inspiration, a legend of the game who joined my team, than a full time coach. We’ll talk a lot. In fact, neither he nor I really know how it will happen. But we’re both excited to be back together in Melbourne (next week).
There is no real expectation, we just want to spend quality time together. I have always have former players by my side: Lundgren, Higueras, Roche, Annacone, Luthi. But I’ve never had someone as successful as Edberg. His generation is the one that impressed me most as a junior, so the priority was to find someone of his generation to help me.

Q: So, we guess you followed with interest the announcement of the collaboration between Novak Djokovic and Boris Becker…
A: Yes, I never thought Boris would embark into this, he would coach. But it’s great for them and great for tennis. I am pleased to see former legends try to help the next generation.

Q: To work with Edberg means that you will play a more attacking tennis?
A: You think if will resign if I don’t play serve and volley (laughs)?
It will be interesting to see if he thinks it is still possible to do many serves and volleys on today’s slower courts, or if there are other ways for me to go to the net. In any case, all Edberg will tell me will mean a lot to me.

Q: Let’s talk about your offseason. What about your back problems?
A: I have done more than what I expected, and it’s really encouraging. This year I haven’t played any exhibition, which allowed me to train extremely hard, and for a longer period of time.
For the first time for more than a year, I’ve been able to train three or four weeks in a row without any problems.
In 2013, every time I had small problems, pains, including back, and it cost me confidence.
For a few months now I can move again without problems and I can give myself fully, especially mentally. I completely recharged my batteries.

Q: Many people speculate on your chances of capturing another Grand Slam title? Where do you have your best chance?
A: If I play my best tennis, probably Wimbledon, then the US Open, the Australian Open and Roland Garros.

Q: We’ve seen you with a new racquet at the practice here
A: Yes, this racquet is different from the one I’ve tried last summer (in Hamburg and Gstaad).
Wilson worked over details that I notify them. They sent me the first batch of racquets after the US Open, and a second one after the Masters.
I chose a frame and I trained with it for two and a half weeks in Dubai. I feel very comfortable, more comfortable than with the racquet of last summer. This one is more like an extension of the one I used previously, with a futuristic look. I can not wait to see how it will happen in matches.

Q: Has the weight of the racquet changed?
A: In fact I don’t even know! Only my stringers and Wilson know that. I’m not controlling every detail.

Entering to win is simple – just follow @WilsonTennis on Twitter and tweet the following: RT @WilsonTennis: Let’s celebrate @KeiNishikori’s title in Memphis. RT & follow to win a Steam racket signed by Kei

Check out the official rules here.

Feli’s giving away a signed pair of his new Wilson Rush Pro tennis shoes. Entering to win them is as easy as it gets. Head to his twitter @Feliciano_Lopez and ReTweet the post that reads, “Want to win a signed pair of my new @WilsonTennis #RushPro kicks? RT to enter!”

Check the rules here.

Wilson launches the Rush Pro

Wilson is revamping its footwear line for 2013 with the introduction of the Rush Pro shoe for men, women and juniors.
The Rush pro features:
– a three dimensional TPU-injected forefoot piece for superior responsiveness, maximum acceleration and controlled deceleration
– a Dynamic Fit 6mm heel-toe drop for lateral stability and low-to-the-ground court feel, eliciting a quicker reaction
– and Endofit, a full construction inner sleeve for enhanced comfort and intuitive fit.

The men’s model is available in four colorways: blue/white/silver, white/grey/gold, lime/black and black/orange. The women’s shoe is offered in blue/white/silver and white/green.

Anne Keothavong, Phillip Kohlschreiber and Feliciano Lopez are among the several tour players sporting this shoe in 2013.

Andy Murray's 6-2, 6-1, 6-3 #lumix #lx7 /cc @panasonicusa

The last Grand Slam of the 2012 tennis season runs through September 9. During the first week, match play pretty much runs true to the rankings, the top seeds usually advance to the second week without having to play that many five set matches. One tremendous advantage for the men players is the fact that the top seeds have developed all-round tennis skills. Today, players rely on the power of the racket head speed. Racket head speed is developed early in a player’s career, but precision ball placement depends upon the racket.

Novak Djokovic

Novak Djokovic, the defending US Open champion uses the HEAD YouTek IG Speed Midplus. Of course, Novak Djokovic is no overnight sensation, he spent years performing grueling training, while listening to criticism about faking injuries, now his tennis skills have legitimized him on the court, this has silenced his critics. His choice of the HEAD YouTek IG Speed Midplus has helped him generate more power on his shots. The tennis racket has a slightly oversized head, which allows him to hit high-speed first serves as uncontested aces, and when he does need a second serve, the rallies are usually short because he clips the line for clean shot winners.

Roger Federer

Roger Federer is looking to complete a tremendous summer with a win at the US Open. With his Wimbledon victory, he cemented his status as one of the greatest tennis players of all time. The racket of choice for Roger is the Wilson Pro Staff Six.One. The Wilson Pro Staff Six.One has helped him to regain the Number One ranking. When he was losing, he lost confidence in his racket. When he changed rackets, he started winning again. The unique features of the racket include the Amplifeel handle, small racket head size, and a patented open string pattern.

Andy Murray

Of course, no conversation about the best men’s tennis players in the world would be complete without mentioning Andy Murray. Every spectator in the stadium could clearly see how disappointed he was to be runner-up at Wimbledon. He felt like the one who had let down a nation, so when he was presented with the opportunity to redeem himself at the Olympics, again on his native soil, he didn’t let up until he was atop the winner’s podium. Murray used the HEAD YouTek IG Radical Pro to avenge the lost he suffered at Wimbledon. He downed Roger Federer while using one of the best tennis rackets on the market today. The HEAD YouTek IG Radical Pro has a retooled head size with proprietary “Innegra technology.” The racket is built for high performance, this proved to be the perfect accompaniment for Andy Murray’s game.

Who will win the 2012 US Open?

  • Roger Federer (39%, 73 Votes)
  • Andy Murray (29%, 54 Votes)
  • Novak Djokovic (23%, 42 Votes)
  • Tomas Berdych (4%, 7 Votes)
  • Juan Martin del Potro (3%, 5 Votes)
  • David Ferrer (1%, 2 Votes)
  • Other (1%, 2 Votes)
  • Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (1%, 1 Votes)
  • John Isner (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 186

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Text by Dave
Pic by stillframe