News ID: 196831
Published: 0207 GMT July 17, 2017

Federer 'always believed' he could win again

Federer 'always believed' he could win again
Roger Federer holds aloft his eighth Wimbledon trophy after beating Marin Cilic in straight sets in the men’s singles final on July 16, 2017.

Roger Federer said he always believed he could win Wimbledon again, after ending a five-year wait for his eighth title with victory over Marin Cilic.

The Swiss, 35, won 6-3, 6-1, 6-4 to become the most successful man in Wimbledon singles history, and claim a 19th Grand Slam title, BBC reported.

Federer's previous triumph at the All England Club was in 2012, and he has since lost in the 2014 and 2015 finals.

"It's special, Wimbledon was always my favorite tournament," he said.

"I truly believed. For me, it was also important that my team believed it, as well.

"My heroes walked the grounds here and walked the courts here. Because of them, I think I became a better player too.

"To make history here at Wimbledon really means a lot to me just because of all of that really. It's that simple."

Fourteen years after his first Wimbledon triumph, Federer added to his lengthy list of achievements:

·       He became the first man to win Wimbledon eight times, surpassing Pete Sampras (2000) and William Renshaw (1889).

·       He is the oldest man to win Wimbledon since the Open era began in 1968.

·       He extended his record to 19 Grand Slam titles, ahead of Rafael Nadal on 15.

·       He stands joint-fourth on the all-time Grand Slam list with Helen Wills Moody, five behind Margaret Court.

Federer has lost just two matches in 2017, and held match points in both of those, collecting titles at the Australian Open, Indian Wells, Miami Masters, Halle and now Wimbledon.

His success is all the more remarkable after he left the All England Club 12 months ago and chose to miss the rest of 2016 to fully recover from a knee injury.

The Swiss returned to win his 18th major title in Melbourne, sparking a superb run of form, but then skipped the clay-court season and took a 10-week break.

"Honestly, I'm incredibly surprised how well this year is going, how well I'm feeling," said Federer.

"I knew I could do great again maybe one day, but not at this level. I guess you would have laughed, too, if I told you I was going to win two Slams this year. People wouldn't believe me if I said that.

"I also didn't believe that I was going to win two this year. It's incredible."

Federer rose to third in the world rankings on Monday, and plans to play more in the second half of the season than the first.

He also expects to try for a ninth Wimbledon title in 2018, aged 36.

"The goal is definitely to be here again next year to try to defend," he said.


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