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Roger Federer is empowered by seven Wimbledon championships and a 90-11 career record at SW19, but he’s not immune to nerves.

The third-seeded Federer said he was relaxed before today’s 7-6 (4), 7-6 (4), 6-4 semifinal win over Tomas Berdych that sent him into a record 11th Wimbledon final.

Watch: Federer Flies Into 11 Wimbledon Final

However, Federer is not immune to nerves—and asserts pre-match jitters are a good sign.

“Today I felt very calm going out on court” Federer said. “Even in the warmups, the first games when I was serving, I was, all right, this is like another match. I'm just really happy it's a semis and not a second round.

“Yes, I do get nervous. I'm happy I do get nervous for the big occasions.”

So how exactly does the 18-time Grand Slam champion feel under stress?

Federer said when he’s tight his movement is sluggish, pulse is racing and is mind grows flooded with “a million ideas.”

“Sometimes it slows down your legs, your pulse starts racing, your head starts—not spinning, in the sense that you have a million ideas, you have to take the right one,” Federer said. “That can stress you out a tad.”

Nerves are natural—Federer says he’s grateful for the jitters because it shows his passion is still strong.

“I always say I'm happy I feel that way because it means I care,” Federer said. “It's not like going through the motions like careless. That would be a horrible feeling, to be honest.”

Photo credit: Ashley Western


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