Apart from skill a tennis player needs a good understanding of his racket too. Roger Federer also over time has made changes to his racket to keep evolving as the game evolves.
In a conversation with Tennis Warehouse, Federer spoke about his racket and how he has changed his rackets over the years.
“It’s been a journey that I have enjoyed, starting with Pete Sampras’ and Stefan Edberg’s racket. Times were different then. There was a lot of serve and volleying going on, fast court tennis and I started with that one too when I was 14 years old and l am still playing with Pro Staff today. Its Pro Staff 97 RF autograph which is wonderful for me, of course, to have my own racket.”
Roger Federer on different rackets in his career
Federer uses Wilson’s Pro Staff RF 97 Autograph racket. As the name suggests, this has a racket head of 97 square inches. Earlier, Federer used a racket head of 85 square inches, then moved to 90, and is now on 97.
“I have had some changes, as you probably know, going from the 85 to the 90 and then to the 97. So, I think that also shows perfectly how tennis has evolved, maybe surfaces have slowed down, how players defend better, rallies get longer and for that, I needed a little bit of better racket head but at the same time, I never wanted to give up my way of being able to control the ball. As I moved to RF 97 autograph, I think I definitely also went for more of a power racket. But yet, didn’t comprise on the quality of the shot.”
One interesting point that Federer raises is the need for the player to change his/her racket as tennis changes. A few years back, serve and volley on fast courts would predominantly be the norm.
But in recent years, as the courts have slowed and players are defending better, there are longer rallies, which evidently require a larger racket head. Therefore, Federer made the switch to Pro Staff RF 97 Autograph in 2014.
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