Some players leave all their hard work off the court very much on it. Others, and in particular the Swiss prodigy Roger Federer, are imbued with such natural talent that everything they do looks effortless.
In an age of power and hustle tennis executed by gym-bashing two-handed backhand beasts, Federer has survived and thrived with a fluent and easy style reminiscent of a tennis age long gone. His (one-handed) backhand is a thing of purity and his graceful movement as sleek and agile as a panther.
The 'Fed Express' has also delivered titles. Heaps of them. Seventeen Grand Slam wins (seven at Wimbledon), 84 career titles and an ever-present spot in the top 10 for more than a decade.
Like every other Swiss male, Federer was required to do national service. Alas, a long-standing back injury meant he couldn't fulfil his military obligations but somehow enabled him to continue being a tennis great.
What was the Swiss Army's loss has been sport's gain. And he's probably earned just about enough in his career to buy a Swiss Army knife (including that attachment to take stones out of horses' hooves) for himself.
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