Roger Federer aces family life
The tennis star credits success to his Fed-t as tic clan
He’s the world’s favourite tennis star, with a savage volley and a killer smile, as well as one of the most successful players of all time.
And Roger Federer – who, at 37, is the world’s number three and the sport’s most gracious veteran – credits his success story to a stable family life, in particular his nine-year marriage to his beloved wife Mirka.
As the 20-time Grand Slam-winning powerhouse, nicknamed “Fed Express”, touches down in Melbourne in the hunt for his seventh Australian Open title, Mirka – herself also a Swiss tennis star – and their two sets of identical twins will be permanent fixtures in his player’s box.
Despite a gruelling travel schedule that sees him away from their home in Switzerland almost 10 months of the year, Roger is never without his family, including kids Myla and Charlene, nine, and Lenny and Leo, four.
While many parents would shudder at the thought of traipsing from hotel room to hotel room, Roger wouldn’t have it any other way.
“I’d rather sleep with kids screaming than away from my wife,” he says. “I refuse to leave the bed with my wife. We always wanted to have kids, but my dream was to be with her and not in another bedroom on another floor.”
Despite being worth an eye-watering $680 million, Roger prefers to be a handson dad and admits he’s changed “tons of nappies” between matches.
And their life on the world tennis circuit appears to be paying off. While Roger has hinted at retirement, the next two decades could see a new generation of Federers running around the court.
“The boys are only four, yes, but they’ve played for a few years now,” he tells. “We roll the ball and hit it along the ground. The ball can bounce a bit more and they can whack it over the net sometimes. The girls also play a little bit.”
But of the potential for them to become professional tennis players, he jokes, “I hope they don’t because it will mean another 25 years on the circuit!”
Australia will always have a special place in Roger’s heart as it’s where he and the mother of his children began their love story. The pair met
at the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, where Mirka was a force of her own on the court.
After that, a persistent foot injury forced her to the sidelines and she instead became Roger’s PR manager. The couple married in 2009 in an intimate ceremony in his hometown of Basel.
While she serves a less official role these days, Roger still honours Mirka, 40, as the reason they’re able to live their globetrotting lifestyle, saying, “My wife does a lot of work, as much as she can. And I try to help as much as I can.”
Despite their demanding schedules, the couple still manage to make time for romance. The pair were spotted in Perth at the Hopman Cup New Year’s Eve Gala, where onlookers tell
Woman’s Day they looked more in love than ever.
“There were a lot of glamorous young things at that party, but Roger only has eyes for his wife,” reports a fellow guest. “You could tell they were enjoying the chance to get out together at a fancy event.
“They’re such hands-on parents on the tour, so it must have been a treat to be able to leave the kids at home.”
I’d rather sleep with kids screaming than away from my wife’
Go Dad! Mirka, their twinsets and Roger’s mum Lynette are courtside in support. “It’s the best thing that ever happened to me,” declares the dad-of-four about having a family. Right: Like father, like son! Roger says his kids “seem very interested” in following in his footsteps.
Love all! The couple first met at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.