If a 16-time Grand Slam champion can ever be flying under the radar at a Grand Slam, Roger Federer is at this year's French Open. Between Rafael Nadal's Roland Garros dominance, Novak Djokovic's epic winning streak and Federer's ongoing descent from otherworldly to merely great, you could forget he's even played this week in Paris.
His first-rounder was stuck in the middle of the Monday schedule and was overshadowed on The Tennis Channel by the Tomas Berdych upset. On Wednesday, Federer played a rare early match, his first since 2004, that began at 5 a.m. ET and lasted less than 90 minutes. Because you probably weren't watching and likely won't see the match in encore coverage, I thought it'd be nice to share a clip. Consider it my contribution to Roger Federer awareness.
Seriously, I'm only half-kidding about this. I've seen three interviews this week on The Tennis Channel and ESPN that have concluded with some variation of the question, "so we haven't talked about Roger Federer yet, what do you think of his chances?" It's still early, I know, but something tells me the opportunity is ripe for him to break up the party at Roland Garros.