Without racket but still the king, Roger Federer wows Wimbledon crowd from royal box
Wimbledon paid tribute to Roger Federer on Tuesday, as the eight-time champion returned to the scene of some of his greatest triumphs.
The Centre Court crowd gave the Swiss great a prolonged standing ovation interspersed with cheers as he entered the royal box.
Federer, fresh from appearing on stage with Coldplay in Zurich at the weekend, was visibly moved before taking his seat next to Catherine, the Princess of Wales.
The 41-year-old has mostly stayed away from tennis since bowing out in emotional scenes at the Laver Cup in London in September 2022 but was similarly honoured at the grass-court event in Halle, Germany in June.
The celebration under the closed roof of Centre Court threatened to upstage the first match of the championships for Elena Rybakina, the defending women’s champion, who started her campaign against US player Shelby Rogers.
Federer, who ended his career with 20 Grand Slam titles, won his first Wimbledon title in 2003 and a record eighth men’s crown in 2017.
He played his final match at the All England Club in 2021, losing in the quarter-finals to Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz.
Novak Djokovic is the hot favourite to equal Federer’s Wimbledon mark and secure a record-extending 24th Grand Slam title. Spaniard Rafael Nadal has 22.