Roger Federer said he is ready for a full schedule in the second half of the season, adding that he’s had enough of practice as he looks to recapture his superb early-season form.
Federer, 35, returns to tennis this week in Stuttgart for the grass-court season following a two-month break, but has vowed it will be his last.
“There are no more breaks now,” Federer said. “I’ve had enough breaks. I'm a practice world champion now and that's not who I want to be. I want to be a champ on the match courts. So I'm going to be playing a regular schedule for the second part of the season… And this is the beginning here at the MercedesCup in Stuttgart.
With the Swiss master and fellow veteran Rafael Nadal occupying the top two spots in the Emirates ATP Race To London, Federer said he is surprised at how the season has panned out so far.
Most fans would have expected Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic to continue do battle for pole position in 2017, but with the duo suffering from a lack of form, Federer and Nadal have risen to the occasion in spectacular fashion.
"I was terribly surprised to win the Australian Open and to back it up and win the sunshine double in Indian Wells and Miami was a complete surprise to me,” Federer said. “I think Rafa winning the French Open is less of a surprise because he'd done it nine times before… I was hoping he was going to dominate the clay-court season like the olden days.
“But I'm still surprised we were able to do it. It maybe had something to do with Murray having a bit of a letdown after his great finish to last year and Novak not playing his absolute best. We were able to take advantage of the fact that we were in great shape and came refreshed into the season after our injuries at the end of last year.
"Obviously Rafa is in great position to finish World No. 1. For him it's going to be all about staying injury free. For me it's about getting back to winning ways, where I left off in Miami."
Federer’s opener in Germany will see him face the winner of the tie between France’s Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Germany’s Tommy Haas.