It was just a short time ago that Roger Federer was the number one player in the world. Today, many tennis experts have said his days look numbered, and they could be right in saying that the best player to ever swing a racket is slowing down. His best chance for one more Slam is this year's Wimbledon, however, here are four reasons why Federer will defend his title this year.
1. Federer is the defending champion, and despite his mileage, is still perhaps the premier grass court player in the world.
2. The conditions at The All England Club are favorable to Federer in 2013. Previously, London had seen record heat over most years in the last decade or so which slows the courts down and makes the play more like clay. This year, the weather has been cool and wet, which makes the court play fast and low, just like last year when he won his seventh Wimbledon title.
3. While there are great all-around players in the draw, no grass court "specialists" look to be real contenders this year. Andy Murray comes the closest to fitting this description, but he might not be 100 percent healthy this year.
4. You just cannot underestimate the heart and resolve of Roger Federer, a great champion.
Steve Kaplan is the owner and managing director of Bethpage Park Tennis Center, as well as director emeritus of Lacoste Academy for New York City Parks Foundation, and executive director and founder of Serve &Return Inc. Steve has coached more than 1,100 nationally- ranked junior players, 16 New York State high school champions, two NCAA Division 1 Singles Champions, and numerous highly-ranked touring professionals. Many of the students Steve has closely mentored have gone to achieve great success as prominent members of the New York financial community, and in other prestigious professions. In 2017, Steve was awarded the Hy Zausner Lifetime Achievement Award by the USTA. He may be reached by e-mail at StevenJKaplan@aol.com.