BBC defends decision to prioritise Tennis on flagship channel
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Roger Federer appears to be hugely excited about the prospect of linking up with Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray at this year’s Laver Cup. All four players have been confirmed as members of Team Europe and will be looking to strike fear into the hearts of Team World when they join forces for the very first time at the tournament, which is set to take place in September.
Federer, who has spent the last few years struggling with a long-term knee injury, confirmed his participation in the Laver Cup back in February but has since been joined by Nadal, Djokovic and Murray. The Swiss icon revealed his delight over forming part of Team Europe’s star-studded line-up with a post to his Instagram story on Friday, which simply read: “Dream team.”
It remains to be seen whether Federer will be in a position to take part at the Laver Cup, though, after missing the vast majority of the last 18 months as he continues to recover from his well-documented injury problems. He will celebrate his 41st birthday in August but has seemingly alleviated fears over his eventual retirement by staying focused on his plan to feature alongside Nadal, Djokovic and Murray later this year.
The upcoming Laver Cup will be played in London for the first time in its five-year history, with the O2 Arena set to host the on-court action when it begins in September. Team Europe have won the trophy at every version of the tournament to date and will be desperate to maintain their 100 per cent record at the next opportunity with arguably the strongest ever list of players at their disposal.
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Djokovic became the latest star to confirm his participation in the Laver Cup on Friday to mark a historic occasion that will see the ‘Big Four’ all play on the same team for the first time. The Serb, who is fresh off the back of his latest Wimbledon triumph, has already insisted that he is looking forward to the challenge in only his second appearance at the tournament after a four-year absence.
“I’m really excited to be joining Team Europe again for the Laver Cup at London’s O2 Arena in September,” said Djokovic after his involvement was officially confirmed.
“It’s the only competition where you can play in a team environment with guys that you’re normally competing against and to be joining Rafa, Roger and Andy – three of my biggest all-time rivals – it’s going to be a truly unique moment in the history of our sport.”
Two more players are set to join Team Europe in advance of the Laver Cup but it remains to be seen who will be poached to play alongside the ‘Big Four’ in London later this year. Federer’s agent, Tony Godsick, who helped to create the tournament ahead of its inaugural event in 2016, is reportedly in talks with teenage breakout star Carlos Alcaraz in order to try and convince the Spaniard to take part but no official announcements regarding his involvement have been made as of yet.
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