Federer looks ahead to keep on top of his game

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Federer looks ahead to keep on top of his game

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Roger Federer reacts during his final match against Spain’s Rafael Nadal at the Swiss Indoors tennis tournament at the St. Jakobshalle in Basel, Switzerland on Sunday. [AP/NEWSIS]


BASEL, Switzerland - Like many dads, Roger Federer is talking with his family about how to spend Christmas.

But unlike most, the father-of-four has the 2017 holidays on his mind - the eve of the tennis season when he will turn 36.

It is an age few reach while still on tour. Yet the player who beat Rafael Nadal in three sets to take the Swiss Indoors title on Sunday seems far from retirement.

“I have a very clear plan how ‘16 is going to be until December,” Federer told The Associated Press after winning his hometown event for a seventh time. “That is the discussion I’m having with my wife right now. Are we going to be home for Christmas or not? Then ‘17 is around the corner for me as well already.

“I’m thinking way ahead,” said the Swiss great, whose victory in Basel lifted him to No. 2 in the rankings published Monday.

Why wouldn’t he? At 34, the numbers for his season speak of a player in top form and fitness.

With a 58-9 record going into this week’s Paris Masters, including six titles and two Grand Slam finals. Only Novak Djokovic in his career-best year has beaten Federer in any tournament final, including denying him a record-extending 18th major title at Wimbledon and the U.S. Open.?

?For now, Federer enjoys his tennis too much to even think about stopping. “I haven’t decided what I’m going to do yet. I feel like I’ll be playing for many more years to come,” he said.

Federer previously said he will not announce a long-term plan to end his career. “I hope it’s going to come gradually and that I will know when the right time is,” he said. “But I don’t want to think about it too much.

“If you get injured then it comes more slowly but the mind could all of a sudden go, pfft, that’s it. Who knows? Family that is just so much more important than playing tennis.”

AP

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