If there’s one thing Roger Federer does better than winning tennis matches, it would have to be entertaining a crowd.
The Swiss has been one of the most popular athletes in the world throughout his 20-year career for both his playing ability and personality in equal measure.
Federer is a five-time winner at the Australian Open and has a special affinity with the Melbourne crowd, who were treated to yet another classy display from the veteran on Tuesday.
He cruised into the second round after dispatching Aljaz Bedene of Slovenia with minimum fuss in straight sets, 6-3 6-4 6-3.
As always, Federer left spectators eagerly awaiting the customary on-court interview with the winning player – an exchange most crowds seem to enjoy as much as the match itself.
Things kicked off as per usual with John McEnroe firing a series of pretty standard questions, chiefly relating to his incredible longevity.
But just when it seemed Federer would be prompted to say goodbye and make his way to the changing rooms, the American requested he hang around to speak with a special guest.
As predicted, the 36-year-old stayed put – but the man who emerged as his second interviewer must’ve caught everyone off guard.
Will Ferrell came onto Rod Laver Arena to continue the same line of questioning about Federer’s remarkable endurance, albeit in a more outlandish manner.
The American actor began by asking: “Roger, tonight you seemed like a gazelle out there on the court. Would you describe your game as a silky gazelle?”
Despite being somewhat bemused by the situation, Federer remained his usual cool self and replied: “Maybe, maybe not. Don’t they get eaten at the end?”
“Not if they’re fast enough,” Ferrell said in response.
Making a second attempt to uncover the secret to his success, he then asked: “Quick question, Roger. You’re 36-years-old, you seem ageless. Are you a witch or a vampire?”
No amount of charm or media training can help someone comfortably answer that, leaving Ferrell, for whatever reason, to assume the latter.
The conversation then moved on to cover wombat meat and Australian spectators, and as it so often does, Federer’s composure served as a reminder of why he’s so well liked.
Check out the full interview in the video below.
Even though it was entirely deliberate, few sportspeople could handle such an awkward situation with as much grace Federer did on this occasion.
It certainly looked like he enjoyed himself, but the defending champion must be hoping he doesn’t have to deal with this after every match at this year’s Australian Open.
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