Roger Federer dished out one of his worst grand slam performances ever to bow out of the 4th round of the US Open against Australian John Millman.
Federer was visibly out of sorts after winning that first set, largely gifting away the match to Millman, recording 77 unforced errors to Millman’s 28.
In the post match press conference, Federer revealed that the heat had gotten to him, as he was finding it tough to get some air going through his system in humid conditions at the Arthur Ashe.
The World no.2 just seemed off in the last 3 sets of the match, unable to get his rhythm and struggling massively with his body and the way it was coping with the heat.
“I felt I couldn’t get air. There was no circulation at all,” Federer said as quoted by BBC
“It’s uncomfortable. Clearly you just keep on sweating more and more and more and more as the match goes on. You lose energy as it goes by.
“At some point also I was just happy that the match was over, I guess.” he added.
The newly installed roof wasn’t on for the match, but Federer felt that the roof just being there has reduced the air ventilation around the court.
The 5 time US Open champion felt that the courts have also played a little slower this year, owing to all the humidity around the court.
“I think just that makes it a totally different US Open,” Federer said talking about the roof and the humidity.
“Plus conditions maybe were playing slower this year on top of it. You have soaking wet pants, soaking wet everything. The balls are in there, too. You try to play. Everything gets slower as you try to hit winners.” he added.
Millman too wasn’t quite happy with the conditions, but clearly he dealt with them in a way better manner than Roger.
“I’m not usually much of a sweater. I mean, I was dripping,” said Millman
“The conditions for the majority of this tournament have been pretty brutal.
“I found it pretty tough early on to hold onto the racquet. It’s kind of moving around in your hands.” he added.
Millman was in disbelief after the match, having won beaten his hero in what would be the biggest win of his career until now.
“I always was of the opinion that I was in the fourth round for a reason. I’ve never played anyone’s reputation,” said Millman.
“I felt a little bit guilty today because he didn’t have his best day, and that’s for sure.
“I have so much respect for him, what he’s done for the game.” he added.
Millman will now be up against Djokovic in the quarter finals and while he did not quite enjoy a lot of success in the duo’s previous meeting at Queen’s, Millman is staying positive.
“I’ll have to improve a lot on the last time I played him. He’s an incredible player. I think he’s in some really good form right now, too,” he said.
“But why not? I think it’s a disservice to who I am if I go out there and don’t have that belief.” he concluded.
What next for Roger Federer? Do you see him winning the US Open ever again?