History was etched last night as Roger Federer’s 24-year tennis career finally came to an end at the Laver Cup. His last ever match was alongside Rafael Nadal, his greatest rival. Sadly, Federer couldn’t secure a final win as they lost against Team World, led by Jack Sock and Frances Tiafoe. As Federer was bidding his dear sport goodbye, he couldn’t control his tears during the farewell speech.
“We’ll get through this somehow. It’s been a wonderful day. I told the guys, ‘I’m happy. I’m not sad.’ It feels great to be here and I enjoyed tying my shoes one more time. Everything was the last time. And, of course, playing with Rafa [Nadal] on the same team and having the guys, everybody here, all the legends. I didn’t want it to feel lonely out there,” he was quoted saying.
Here’s a look at his farewell speech:
— Laver Cup (@LaverCup) September 23, 2022
Another player who was in constant tears was Rafael Nadal, who watched his rival and dear friend say his final goodbye to the sport that shaped both their lives greatly.
Here’s a look:
— Laver Cup (@LaverCup) September 24, 2022
This is the greatness of sports – it brings even the greatest of rivals together. On the court, they might battle each other out but off it, they have nothing but love, admiration and respect for each other. That’s what competition should look like. Make each other better. Respect each other’s craft. Learn from each other. And treat each other with the dignity they deserve. This is where the greatness lies.
And several people took to Twitter to share their thoughts on this historic moment. Have a look:
If you saw the way Nadal cried all the way through Federer's farewell, you were witness to something that has never been seen before.
Your biggest rival, bawling his eyes out at your retirement? The stuff of movies. Of folklore. It just isnt supposed to happen.
And yet it did.
— Musab (@Musab_Abid) September 23, 2022
— Mahfuz Salekin (@MahfuzSalekin) September 23, 2022
What an emotional rollercoaster ride that was. Fed crying like a baby for his ultimate love "tennis" and Mannnn Nadal cried for fed, he truly loves him. ❤️Fedal❤️ we won't be able to see rivalry like this in any sport #GOAT𓃵 pic.twitter.com/618QSqqR09
— Raman Raghuwanshi (@Raman_Raghu7) September 24, 2022
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Nadal crying at Federer's farewell speech has to be the most iconic moment of tennis history, who would have thought that in 2008/09! pic.twitter.com/Du19KbzF8T
— Dr. Idrees Mubarik (@doc_hormone) September 23, 2022
He’s crying. Nadal is crying. We’re crying. The last of Roger Federer. So fortunate to have watched this.
— Steve Simmons (@simmonssteve) September 23, 2022
nadal crying more than Federer says everything you need to know about them
— Abla (@reveliodemure) September 23, 2022
" No I am not crying, you are! "
This is his rival Rafael Nadal watching Federer retire from Tennis!
Thank you Roger Federer for changing tennis forever, will miss those iconic Fedal matches!#Federer #RogerFederer𓃵 pic.twitter.com/dbrUsvrjiy
— Vishal Verma (@VishalVerma_9) September 24, 2022
The fact that Nadal is crying says everything you need to know about the impact Federer had on his career and his life. Beautiful scenes, yet so sad at the same time
— ALAN (@Wotyyt) September 23, 2022
Rafa Nadal and Novak Djokovic crying at Roger Federer’s retirement.
How beautiful is sport? How enriching, how inspiring, how magical 🥺♥️ pic.twitter.com/ZqT6069k5n
— Rupin Kale (@Vegansportlover) September 24, 2022
Roger Federer & Rafa Nadal Crying sitting side by side has to be One of the Greatest Moments in Sports History.. 🥺💔💔
THESE TWO REVOLUTIONIZED TENNIS, THE TWO WHO PUSHED EACH OTHER TO NEXT LEVEL, THEY WERE RIVALS ON THE COURT BUT JUST ADMIRERS OF EACH OTHER OFF THE PITCH. pic.twitter.com/br9sFUW5AB
— AZR (@AzrOrganization) September 24, 2022
I'm not crying, you're crying 😭
How lucky are we all, to have witnessed these two champions showing us amazing tennis and more importantly how to conduct oneself on and off the court.#Federer #Nadal #GOAT #myheros pic.twitter.com/YHmxOOUq5W
— kathie stan🌈 (@kaff30) September 24, 2022
Federer and Nadal crying together at Federer’s retirement is a vaccine against rampant narcissism, vulgarity and indignity in public life. No-one combined brilliance and grace quite like Federer. pic.twitter.com/YHjTIJmHgH
— Christian Christensen (@ChrChristensen) September 24, 2022
So long, Federer!