Roger Federer is arguably the greatest player ever to set foot on a tennis court. At 26, he has been ranked the world’s number one for a record 200 consecutive weeks, with 53 titles to his name, 12 of which are Grand Slam wins.
On this weekend’s TALK ASIA, CNN’s Anjali Rao takes on the world number one in Macau before his exhibition match against tennis icon, Pete Sampras. She shares a laugh with the two all-time tennis greats and learns a secret or two from the pros themselves, including a tip from Federer on his signature forehand. She then sits down with the Swiss star to talk about the one Grand Slam he’s yet to conquer, the French Open. He also speaks frankly about the reigning champion standing in his way, Rafael Nadal.
Federer has yet to beat Pete Sampras’ record of 286 weeks as number one, but before he hits the court with Sampras, he tells Rao of the appeal and challenge of going up against his idol that afternoon.
Federer also comments on the recent match fixing scandal engulfing professional tennis by saying “…we owe it to the integrity of the game that we don’t..”.
Listed on TIME magazine’s 100 most influential people list in 2007, Federer is known for being tennis’ “Mr. Nice Guy”. He explains how, despite his success and his fortune, he’s kept well-grounded with the long-time support of girlfriend Mirka Vavrinec who is fiercely protective of him and has been a part of almost every title he’s won.
Away from the court, the tennis star finds time to watch close friend and another sporting great, golf number one Tiger Woods. Federer talks of his relationship with the world-beating sports star who’s also at the top of his game.