Roger Federer has arrived in Australia to participate in the Hopman Cup and resume his preparation ahead of his Australian Open defence which begins next month. The 36-year-old landed in Perth on Thursday with his family and is expected to get on with his practice later in the day to acclimatise himself with the surroundings.
The Swiss master begins the year as the number two ranked player in the world. He had an exceptional 2017, where he won seven titles, including two Slams - the Australian Open and Wimbledon. His only regret for the year was losing the number one rank to Rafael Nadal who confirmed his status by reaching the quarter-finals of the Paris Masters before eventually retiring with a knee problem.
The run was enough to keep him atop the tables for the year, despite pulling out of the ATP World Finals with an injury after a defeat to David Goffin. Federer had a disappointing end to the year, losing the semi-finals of the ATP World Finals to Goffin, having made it past the round robin group stage with consummate ease.
However, the Swiss ace is aware that expectations for 2018 would be peak high after the showing last year but has tried to calm things down by stating that he does not expect himself to achieve the same things he did in 2017. Preparations for the year ahead has been at an optimal level and Federer is looking forward to giving his best, irrespective of the result.
"It's totally different this time around," said Federer, as quoted by the Express. "I had a great off season. I mean, I did have a good off season too last year but I just wasn't sure what to expect. Now expectations are higher but at the same time I try to remind myself just don't think it's normal and realistic to aim for the same things I did this year in 2017.
"I've got to try and keep it cool. Try my best and see what happens but the preparation's been good so far. We'll see how things go. It worked out perfectly this year, (winning) at the Australian Open. Of course, that's a good omen. I hope that winning or losing the Hopman Cup is going to be good for me.
"Obviously looking ahead to Melbourne, I really hope that Hopman Cup's going to give me everything I need here. I had a wonderful time (in 2017). I can't wait to see all the fans again because they came out in big numbers and supported me."