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By Richard Pagliaro | Wednesday, October 21, 2020

 
Roger Federer

"At the moment, it looks like I can make my comeback at the Australian Open in January," said Roger Federer.

Photo credit: Mark Peterson/Corleve

The Happy Slam can look forward to a merry Maestro.

Roger Federer says he's practicing pain-free following a pair of arthroscopic right knees surgeries and is targeting a return at the Australian Open in January if fully fit.

More: Djokovic Opts Out of Paris

"I'm on the right track," Federer told Schweizer Illustrierte magazine. "I'm gradually coming back but I'm going to take my time and don't want to put any pressure on myself. I will only take part in a tournament when I am 100 percent fit.

"At the moment, it looks like I can make my comeback at the Australian Open in January."

The 39-year-old Swiss has not played since bowing to Novak Djokovic in the Australian Open semifinals. Federer played a record-extending 15th Australian Open semifinal and 46th Grand Slam semifinal in Melbourne last January.

Following that defeat, Federer underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right knee. In June, Federer had a second arthroscopic surgery on the same knee that he called "a quick" procedure at the time in announcing he was pulling the plug on his 2020 season to recovery and rehab his knee.




The 20-time Grand Slam champion said while he continues to build strength in his surgically-repaired knee, he's not yet back to his standard full training mode.

"Not yet, more than two hours with the racquet are not possible at the moment," Federer said. "But I've been working on my stamina and strength absolutely without pain for a while. There will be no further operations."

The fourth-ranked Swiss has made a successful return from surgery in the past.

In 2016, the Swiss had surgery on his left knee and returned to play on the clay. But he cut his season short after Wimbledon that season with his knee still causing problems.

Federer returned in good health and form in 2017 and beat rival Rafael Nadal to win the Australian Open for his 18th major title, then topped Marin Cilic in the Wimbledon final for his 19th Grand Slam championship. Federer stopped Cilic again in the 2018 Australian Open final that propelled him to history as the oldest ATP world No. 1 at the age of 36.

 

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