Roger Federer recalls how Wimbledon security guard refused to let him in after he forgot his pass | UK News
Roger Federer thought his eight tournament wins at Wimbledon would be enough to get him past the visitor gate – but he was thwarted as a security guard enforced a “no card, no entry” policy.
The tennis star tried to drop by unannounced for tea with his coach when he was in London for a doctor’s appointment.
But when he drove up to the visitor gate and asked how he could get in, he was repeatedly asked for his membership card – with the security guard not recognising him.
The question left him nonplussed.
Recalling the story, he said: “When you win Wimbledon, you become a member automatically. And honestly, I don’t know about membership cards, they are probably at home somewhere and I’ve just been travelling, so I had no idea.
“I’m like, ‘No, I don’t have my membership card, but I am a member. I’m just wondering where I can get in’.”
The guard remained unmoved by his pleas, Federer told host Trevor Noah on The Daily Show, leaving him to try to explain again.
“There’s (usually) loads of people, and I come in a different way. And this is the first time I’m here while the tournament’s not on and I don’t know where to get in, so I’m just asking you again where I can get in.”
Ferderer said he was told: “Other side, but you have to be a member.”
“So I look at her one last time and I’m in a panic now – and I still can’t believe I said this because I still feel bad about this – but I look at her and say, ‘I’ve won this tournament eight times. Please believe me, I am a member. Where do I get in?'”
The 41-year-old managed to gain entrance at a different gate after someone asked him for a selfie and a different security guard recognised him.
He joked: “I thought about going over to the other side and giving a wave that I was in, but I didn’t do it.”
Federer has won 20 Grand Slams, including eight Wimbledon titles. He said he never normally boasts about his titles, so had a split second of doubt about whether he had won seven or eight times.
The Swiss tennis great announced his retirement in September.
At the time he said he “must recognise when it is time to end my competitive career”.
“The past three years have presented me with challenges in the form of injuries and surgeries.
“I’ve worked hard to return to full competitive form. But I also know my body’s capacities and limits and its message to me lately has been clear.”