Roger Federer will leave the Laver Cup doubles on Friday


Roger Federer has confirmed that the final doubles match of his illustrious career will take place at the Laver Cup in London on Friday night.

The 20-time Grand Slam winner said last week she would retire at the singles event, which starts on Friday at 02.

He has struggled with a knee problem and does not feel able to play solo.

“It’s an event I don’t want to mess up, but I know my limits,” said the 41-year-old Swiss, who hopes to match his old rival Rafael Nadal.

Italy’s Matteo Berrettini, the first alternate in the team tournament, will take Federer’s place at the weekend.

Federer’s last competitive match was a loss to Hubert Hurkacz in last year’s Wimbledon quarter-finals.

Europe will host a world team in the three-day Laver Cup, where six players from each side usually have to play at least one singles match.

“I asked [Europe captain] Bjorn [Borg] If I could play a double, on Friday night, Matteo will come in,” Federer said at a press conference.

“I’m nervous, I haven’t played in a long time.”

“I didn’t want to be a ghost”

His swan song could see a link with Spanish great Nadal.

“Obviously the nicest thing would be to play doubles here with Nadal, because my competition has been great,” he said.

Federer told BBC Sport: “I want to play at a level that’s good for me, but also for the fans and the event, enjoy it, but at the same time I want to try my best and take it all in.

“Eurgh, it’s going to be very different in the next 48-72 hours, but I’m looking forward to it, I signed up and – when I announced – I wanted to be there.

“I didn’t just make the news and want to be a ghost, I didn’t want that, I wanted to be around.

“I have a wonderful platform at the Laver Cup where everyone is surrounded and it feels like a party.”

Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, Casper Ruud and Stefanos Tsitsipas are also in the European team, and will face a world team consisting of Taylor Fritz, Felix Auger-Aliassime, Diego Schwartzman, Alex de Minaur, Frances Tiafoe and Jack Sock.

Friday afternoon’s two-match singles session is followed by another singles match and a doubles match in the afternoon.

Federer said he was most proud of his longevity and that his London retirement made sense as it was “perhaps the most special place” of his career.

“You don’t need all the records to be happy, I’ll tell you that,” added the eight-time Wimbledon champion.

The Swiss earlier he told BBC Breakfast The decision to retire came after he stopped “thinking” he could continue playing due to injuries.

“I knew I was on very thin ice the last year since I played Wimbledon,” he said.

“I tried to come back but there was a limit to what I could do.”