Thirteen months after his run to the 2020 Australian Open semi-finals, Roger Federer returned to a professional tennis court on Saturday for his first practice session at the Qatar ExxonMobil Open.
The three-time Doha champion spent an hour practising on Court 1 at the Khalifa International Tennis & Squash Complex with the man he could meet in his comeback match: Daniel Evans. Despite the cold and windy conditions, the pair were in good spirits ahead of the tournament, which will take place from 8-13 March.
If Federer is to add to his 26-3 record at the event, he may need to overcome Murray River Open champion Evans in the second round. The Brit will face Jeremy Chardy in a first-round clash for the right to play Federer.
Federer will compete in Doha for the first time since 2012 next week. The Swiss has travelled to the Middle East with his coaches Severin Luthi and Ivan Ljubicic, as well as his physio, Daniel Troxler.