London - Roger Federer warned his rivals not to write him off yet after a
Wimbledon final defeat that left the Swiss star without a major title for three
Federer's bid for a first Grand Slam crown since he last won Wimbledon in
2012 was shattered by Novak Djokovic as the world number one clinched a 7-6
(7/1), 6-7 (10/12), 6-4, 6-3 victory on Sunday.
It was a huge blow for Federer, who had hoped to avenge last year's
Wimbledon final loss against Djokovic by winning his favourite tournament for a
record eighth time.
Federer has won only one of the last 22 Grand Slam events and, with the
world number two turning 34 before the US Open starts in August, there will be
many who believe his 10th Wimbledon final will prove to be his last chance to
add to his 17 Grand Slam titles.
But the 33-year-old insists his dominant run to the final, which included a
sublime semi-final rout of former champion Andy Murray, and a strong first two
sets against Djokovic showed there is still plenty of life in him yet.
"I lost against the world No. 1 at the moment. That's the kind of guy
you probably can lose against. I'm not going to accept it and say it's normal.
It's not," Federer said.
"But I've beaten him a few times. I'm one of the few guys that's gotten
"I think I was able to show that on the court today, how close it
really was. Even though at the end it might look routine, but I don't think
that was the case.
"I'm right there. My game is good. I got broken very few times this
"I played on my terms. Things are all right. I still think I had a
great tournament. You can have good tournaments without winning."
Falling just short at the tournament where he has reigned supreme for much
of the last two decades was a bitter pill to swallow for Federer, but he
conceded his years of success have insulated him against feeling down for long
when he loses in a final.
"It's never fun losing. You walk away empty-handed. For me a finalist
trophy is not the same. Everybody knows that," Federer said.
"But thankfully I've won here in the past, so it does not feel like I'm
Although he has won Wimbledon for the last two years, Djokovic has yet to
inspire that kind of hero worship that Federer enjoyed in the final and the
Swiss admitted he was touched by the crowd's support.
"It's great. To have so much crowd support, particularly here at
Wimbledon, which is the Holy Grail. It's beautiful," he said.
"I must tell you it means as much to me almost like winning."
Federer plans to jet off for a recuperative holiday with wife Mirka and
their four children before focusing on the US Open.
When he gets to New York, Federer knows nine-time major winner Djokovic - the
champion in three of the last five Grand Slams - will be the man to beat again.
And he admits the Serb will deserve to ranked in the same bracket as the
all-time greats if he can maintain his remarkable consistency over the next few
"He's clearly making a big name for himself, having won as many times
now as he has in these different slams," Federer said.
"Also his streak at world No 3, 2, 1, keeping it up, winning a lot of
titles time and time again.
"Staying injury-free now for him is crucial. Clearly he's going to be
one of the top guys.
"Where, we'll still have to wait and see. I'm sure he still has many
more great years ahead of him."