Roger Federer could miss the Australian Open, say coaches

Good news for Roger Federer fans.

According to his coach, the world number two tennis star is unlikely to play in the upcoming Australian Open in January.

”Roger is about 100 percent, [100 percent healthy] but I think that we’ve decided not to push it in the Australian Open,” Stefan Edberg, the German great who has teamed up with Federer since 2014, told ESPN last week.

”If he is healthy, why push it? We’re happy he’s in the zone where he wants to be.”

Federer is recovering from knee surgery. He is scheduled to play at next week’s US Open before heading to Cincinnati in two weeks to practice with Edberg.

Federer, 35, has not competed at the Australian Open since 2011, when he won his 17th Grand Slam.

”Here is a guy that you cannot bet against because he’s perfect mentally,” said Federer’s former coach Severin Luthi. ”He knows exactly what he wants to achieve. He has every chance to win major tournaments … he will win the final one in Montreal and Cincinnati, the final one in Basel and Wimbledon, and will have two majors when he turns 36, and this will help him emotionally.”

For the Australian Open, Federer’s No. 1 goal is to maintain his consistency, Edberg said. Federer won the Montreal title in August.

Edberg said that he expected Federer would be ”trying to fight well” at the US Open, where he enters as the favorite to win his sixth title in New York.

In September 2015, Federer underwent knee surgery after a lengthy injury layoff. He made a return at the 2016 Australian Open, but had a first-round exit, ending his streak of 36 consecutive Grand Slam quarterfinal appearances.

Federer is scheduled to play his first-round match at the US Open against Argentine Federico Delbonis. He would need to win at least three sets to advance to the fourth round.

Federer, whose 17 Grand Slam singles titles are tied for second most all-time with Pete Sampras, last won a Grand Slam in 2013 when he won Wimbledon. He defeated Novak Djokovic in straight sets in the final.

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