• Roger Federer celebrates his victory at the Australian Open (Getty Images)Source: Getty Images
Whether or not this will be Roger Federer’s last Australian Open remains to be seen, but there will never be another player quite like the Swiss maestro.
By
Patrick Nugent at Melbourne Park

26 Jan 2020 - 9:33 AM  UPDATED 26 Jan 2020 - 9:33 AM

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Federer, who turns 39 in August, is contesting his 21st singles main draw at the Australian Open.

The record 20-time grand slam winner has always had his sights set on playing the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, which start in late July.

He will almost certainly then head to Flushing Meadows for the US Open (LIVE on SBS).

Could after that be the time for Federer to call it a day?

If that’s the case, we could be witnessing his last grand slam in Australia.

The six-time Australian Open winner is a crowd favourite here in Melbourne as can be seen during his opening three victories at this year’s event.

Particularly during his epic five-set win over Aussie - and 2018 US Open conqueror - John Millman in the third round on Friday night (AEDT), Federer enjoyed a large contingent of support.

“I think if I do (keep) playing tennis it’s because of winning titles, trying to win as many matches as possible, enjoy myself out on court but also being in epic matches like this,” Federer said after the 4-6, 7-6(2), 6-4, 4-6, 7-6(8) victory over Millman.

“As long as the crowds are into it, you have a great battle with an opponent (like Millman) who you really admire and respect, it’s a good feeling.”

“I’m happy I had that match. I hope I would feel the same way also if I would have lost, to be honest.”

A lot has been said about whether Federer will maintain the GOAT status - if Rafael Nadal (currently on 19 grand slams) or Novak Djokovic (16) go on to surpass him.

Essentially, I believe anything apart from a two-three grand slam lead over Federer should see the Swiss great maintain the mantle as the GOAT.

While this is a conversation for another day, few could argue that the artistry, magic, effortlessness and skill of Federer will ever be matched on a tennis court.

If this is the last time we see him here at the Australian Open, thanks for the memories Roger.