Roger Federer won't return from knee surgery until late summer

Roger Federer, who is continuing to rehab from last year's knee surgery, gave an update on his status Saturday while he was attending a women's World Cup ski race in Lenzerheide, Switzerland.

Via the AP, the tennis legend told Swiss broadcaster SRF that if he's able to return this year at all, it won't be until late summer at the earliest. If he is back by then, he might be able to compete at the US Open.

Federer, 40, hasn't played since last summer when he crashed out at Wimbledon. The eight-time All-England champion became the oldest men's player to reach the quarterfinals, where he was then upset by No. 14 seed Hubert Hurkacz in straight sets — the first time in 19 years he'd lost in straight sets at Wimbledon.

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In August, Federer announced that he'd injured his knee during the grass court season, and for the second time in two years he needed surgery that would end his year. He withdrew from the US Open and said he'd be off the tour for "many months."

It's not clear how much longer Federer will continue to compete if he makes his return this summer. Initially, he said he was having the knee surgery to improve his overall quality of life with his family, and it wasn't about returning to competitive tennis. Presumably he wants to continue to keep his knee healthy, so his return could be about leaving tennis on his own terms, or he could be trying to amp up for one last run at his 21st Grand Slam title.

Either way, it'll be good to see Federer back when he does come back. Tennis is more fun with him in it, and a legend like him deserves to end his career the way he wants to.

FIS Ski World Cup: Lenzerheide Super G Women, Roger Federer attending the Women Super G in Lenzerheide, on March 05, 2022. (Photo by Jari Pestelacci/JustPictures/LiveMedia/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Roger Federer won't be returning to competitive tennis until late summer at the earliest. (Photo by Jari Pestelacci/JustPictures/LiveMedia/NurPhoto via Getty Images)