The day Roger Federer couldn’t stop laughing at CNN correspondent’s Spanish phrases while explaining how important tennis is to him was a fitting end to his press conference.
Federer, after his first clay-court masters title for over two decades and a perfect season on hardcourt, was able to laugh and smile when asked a question about his love for Spanish and his career at the same time.
After taking the court with his wife, former world No. four, Maria Sharapova, he joked at the end of his press conference, “We had a good press conference today. Maria and I are going to have a good dinner tonight.”
Federer wasn’t just talking his own language. He was using a different version of it to talk about what’s most important to him as he steps up to defend his 20th major title Sunday at the French Open.
This isn’t the first time that Federer has spoken on the topic, however, he will almost certainly be the first guy to do so on live TV. When he finally did, it would become something of a meme.
“There’s no more love for me in Spain,” he said on Spanish TV.
His laughter came in fits and starts. He kept changing the words, which led to him sometimes giving the impression he was not really talking just about tennis.
A lot of what he said was about his parents. “I was always very, very close with them. My mom’s a little bit stronger, she’s a little bit more cheerful. She’s had a lot of problems in life. My dad is a little bit more of the opposite.”
He wasn’t the only one who was able to laugh at himself, however.
This was also a time to explain to me how he does not get emotional and has never felt that way about a moment in his career. That, combined with the fact he has made it so much more than he ever expected, makes for another fun time to remember.
On the eve of this Masters 500 rematch, here’s a look at the most important elements of each man’s first Slam title: