After spending a few days practicing on clay courts in Switzerland, a healthy and well-rested Roger Federer settled on his upcoming schedule: He will bypass the French Open and turn his focus to Wimbledon, then the U.S. Open.
According to various media reports, Federer posted a message titled “Roger to skip Roland Garros” on his website, announcing that he will stay away from competing on clay entirely in 2017 and instead will prepare for the grass- and hard-court events that follow.
It’s the second year in a row that Federer pulled out of the French Open, where main-draw play begins in Paris on May 28. He won the title at the clay-court major in 2009 to complete a career Grand Slam.
“The start to the year has been magical for me but I need to recognize that scheduling will be the key to my longevity moving forward.
“Thus, my team and I concluded today that playing just one event on clay was not in the best interest of my tennis and physical preparation for the remainder of the season.”
Federer, 35, has already won the three biggest titles of the year to date as he followed his triumph in Australia with wins at Indian Wells and the Miami Open.
The former world number one’s announcement came a day after Rafael Nadal won his third consecutive claycourt title of the season ahead of the French Open, where the Spaniard will be bidding for his 10th Roland Garros title.
Federer will now focus on being in top form for Wimbledon, which begins on July 3 and where he is a seven-times champion.