Roger Federer lifts lid on his decision not to play in the Davis Cup

Roger Federer explains his decision not to play in the first round of the Davis Cup against Belgium

The Sport Review staff
By and    
roger federer
Roger Federer in action in Dubai Photo: Marianne Bevis

Roger Federer has admitted he felt that a “big burden” had been lifted with his decision not to play in Switzerland’s Davis Cup first-round tie against Belgium.

Federer and Stan Wawrinka memorably led their country to victory in last year’s tournament.

However, both players have opted not to take part in next month’s tie as they focus on the ATP Tour.

Asked by our reporter Marianne Bevis in Dubai on Monday afternoon if it had been a tough decision not to play, Federer replied: “No, it wasn’t a difficult decision.

It’s been a big burden for me throughout my career

Roger Federer

“I have played for so long, and I think by winning it I can finally do whatever I please, to be quite honest.

“It’s been a big burden for me throughout my career and one of the things that have caused more difficulties in my life than many other things, I must say, because I always feel there is so much guilt put on you from the Federation or from the ITF more so than anybody else. So I’m happy I was able to finally tick that off and do it altogether.

“I didn’t do it just for that. I totally did it for the boys more than for me, to be quite honest. I just really wanted Michael and Marco and Stan to get it because they deserve it. So for me this year it was very clear that I was not going to play any more after this win, but I have to see how things go.

“I hope that Stan is going to play, you know, next round or September or whatever it’s going to be to keep us in the World Group. Who knows? You never know if they can win it without us, as well. It’s an opportunity, but clearly we are not the favourites now playing against Belgium.

“But I’m sorry for the team because the team is pretty much intact from the staff and from captain and everybody. They are all some of my best friends, so that was the tougher part of it, less the tennis itself.”

Asked if he had retired from Davis Cup duty altogether, Federer replied: “No, I didn’t say that. I don’t think I can, actually, as you know.”

MORE: Get TREBLE the odds on any sports bet. T&Cs apply

MORE: Have your say on Facebook

MORE: The latest football news

MORE: The latest tennis news

The Sport Review
Jamie Carragher explains why Man United will be concerned about Tottenham
The Sport Review
Man United odds-on to sign Portugal defender ahead of Arsenal in 2017 January transfer window
Slideshow
The Sport Review
Football’s 11 most lucrative kit deals: Arsenal, Man United, Liverpool and Chelsea feature
Slideshow
The Sport Review
12 young Liverpool players who can impress Jurgen Klopp
The Sport Review
Top 30 highest-paid Premier League players: Man Utd, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool stars feature
The Sport Review
Roberto Firmino: 25 photos of the Liverpool forward’s stunning wife
The Sport Review
Man United WAGs: Meet Ander Herrera, Juan Mata and David De Gea’s girlfriends
The Sport Review
Real Madrid player wages 2016: Can you guess how much Cristiano Ronaldo, Gareth Bale earn?
The Sport Review
Top 26 Christian footballers: Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool and Man Utd players feature
The Sport Review
Barcelona player wages 2016: Can you guess how much Lionel Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez earn?
The Sport Review
Top 25 Muslim football players in Premier League: Arsenal, Liverpool, Man Utd and Chelsea stars feature
The Sport Review
15 Chelsea January transfer targets: Di Maria, Hazard, Lukaku, Verratti and more
The Sport Review
Top 25 most stylish footballers: Arsenal, Man Utd, Chelsea and Liverpool stars feature
The Sport Review
IPTL: Difficult third season continues without Serena Williams and Roger Federer
The Sport Review
Arsene Wenger: I’ve convinced Alexis Sanchez about this at Arsenal
The Sport Review
Jamie Carragher: It looks like this will cost Liverpool the title