Roger Federer has withdrawn from the French Open ahead of his fourth round match and Mats Wilander and Mischa Zverev believe it's perfect prep for Wimbledon.
When Federer was finally able to close out a tough four-set win over Dominik Koepfer after three tie-breakers and three hours and 35 minutes, he cut a relieved and weary figure at close to 1am local time in Paris.
The Swiss earlier spoke openly about considering pulling out of the tournament due to the stress and strain on his body from the gruelling late match - and now it has been confirmed.
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Eurosport experts Wilander and Zverev believe Federer has made the right decision and that his three rounds at Roland Garros will represent the perfect preparation for Wimbledon.
"He talked about it pretty much straight after his match and we were all hoping it was not going to be the case [that he was going to withdraw]," Wilander said.
"At the same time, it proves that it’s a long-term project for him to come back. For me, that’s good news because it shows he’s going to be around for a bit longer. Obviously, he got the matches that he needed and he wanted.

Federer reveals he may pull out of French Open

"It would be tough to go up against Matteo Berrettini and then you have Novak Djokovic and maybe Rafa Nadal.
"The main period for him over the years is the grass court season – he obviously enjoys all the Grand Slams and different surfaces – but grass comes so naturally to him and that’s where he has had the most success.
So, yes, obviously perfect for him. He beat Marin Cilic, who’s a great player, he won a tough four-setter against Dominic Koepfer, so he won a lot of big points. I think it’s absolutely perfect preparation.
Zverev added: "He made it to the second week as we all predicted and he did play some great tennis. He moved well and it has happened in the past where he had a few tough matches – I think it was in Rome where we had two matches in one day and he said, 'Look...' – because he wants to play his best tennis when he steps on to the court.
"If he doesn’t feel 100 per cent he doesn’t want to risk hurting himself or giving a poor performance. It’s not who he is, and that’s why he decided he'd better wait for the next one.
"After being on the court for so many years, you do understand your body. Every time you feel something you do potentially know what it could mean for the future. That’s why he wants to be careful; that’s why he wants to be cautious; and that’s why he wants to be ready for the grass courts.
"I think he’s always been very smart with those decisions. I think this time he knew what he was doing."

Highlights: Federer battles through in late night clash with Koepfer

The Roland Garros tournament organisers first announced Federer's news, quoting him on Sunday afternoon that he had withdrawn from the fourth round of the tournament.
"After discussions with my team, I’ve decided I will need to pull out of the French Open today," Federer said in the statement.
"After two knee surgeries and over a year of rehabilitation it’s important that I listen to my body and make sure I don’t push myself too quickly on my road to recovery.
"I am thrilled to have gotten three matches under my belt. There is no greater feeling than being back on court."
Tournament director, Guy Forget added: "The Roland-Garros tournament is sorry about the withdrawal of Roger Federer, who put up an incredible fight last night.
"We were all delighted to see Roger back in Paris, where he played three high-level matches. We wish him all the best for the rest of the season."
Ninth-seeded Italian Berrettini has subsequently received a walkover into the quarter-finals, where he awaits either world number one Djokovic or 19-year-old Lorenzo Musetti.

Federer: My love of the game helped me through

Speaking in a press conference after the very late finish to his third-round win, Federer hinted at the decision that was to follow.
"I mean, every match here or at Geneva I have to reassess the situation after the match and see how the knee feels the next morning," Federer said.
"So from that standpoint for me it's always like that. There is no difference after a match like this, but maybe even more so after a match like this that has been long.
"Like I explained before, I have not been through three-and-a-half-hour battles in practice either.
We go through these matches, we analyse them highly and look on what's next. We will do the same here on Sunday, because I need to decide if I keep on playing or not.
"Is it not too much risk at this moment to keep on pushing or is this just a perfect way to just take a rest?"

'How on earth?' - Federer with round-the-net stunner to win wild point

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Watch all the action from the 2021 French Open live on Eurosport, eurosport.co.uk and the Eurosport app with 13-time champion Rafael Nadal eyeing a remarkable 14th title and 2020 Roland Garros sensation Iga Swiatek aiming to replicate her stunning triumph.
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