Roger Federer loses at Wimbledon, then ponders if it’s for the last time

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Roger Federer said he doesn’t know if he will play another Wimbledon after being upset in the quarterfinals by Poland’s Hubert Hurkacz.

“Of course, I would like to play it again, but at my age you’re just never sure what’s around the corner,” said Federer, who turns 40 on Aug. 8.

Federer said he will take a few days to determine his next steps, including whether he will play the Tokyo Olympics. Asked about retirement, he said his goal is to continue playing.

WIMBLEDON DRAWS: Men | Women

“Everything that comes after Wimbledon, we were always going to sit down and talk about it,” he said. “What do I need to do to get in better shape so I can be more competitive?”

Hurkacz, the 14th seed in his first major quarterfinal, swept Federer 6-3, 7-6 (4), 6-0, marking the Swiss’ first straight-sets defeat at the All England Club since 2002. It’s his first time losing a set 6-0 in 119 career Wimbledon matches and his second bagel anywhere since 1999.

Federer, the sixth seed, won the first of his record eight Wimbledon men’s singles titles in 2003. It was also the first of his 20 Grand Slam singles titles, a male record he shares with Rafael NadalNovak Djokovic will tie them if he wins Wimbledon on Sunday.

Federer’s last Grand Slam title came at the 2018 Australian Open. He went 13 months between tournaments after two knee surgeries in 2020, progressing from crutches to walking free to being back on the tennis court.

“I’m actually very happy I made it as far as I did here and I actually was able to play Wimbledon at the level that I did after everything I went through,” he said.

The Centre Court crowd gave Federer a standing ovation as he left Wednesday. Federer acknowledged them.

“That’s why I play,” he said of the atmosphere. “That’s why I still play now.”

Hurkacz plays No. 7 Matteo Berrettini of Italy or No. 16 Felix Auger-Aliassime of Canada in the semifinals on Friday.

Djokovic, a five-time Wimbledon champ, plays Canadian Denis Shapovalov in the other semifinal.

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World champion skier Kyle Smaine dies in avalanche at age 31

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Kyle Smaine, a retired world champion halfpipe skier, died in an avalanche in Japan on Sunday, according to NBC News, citing Smaine’s father. He was 31.

Smaine, a 2015 World champion in ski halfpipe, had been doing ski filming in Japan, sharing videos on his Instagram account over the past week.

The native of South Lake Tahoe, California, finished ninth in ski halfpipe at the 2016 Winter X Games in Aspen, Colorado.

In 2018, Smaine won the fifth and final U.S. Olympic qualifying series event in ski halfpipe but did not make the four-man team for PyeongChang. His last sanctioned international competition was in February 2018.

Late Sunday, two-time Olympic champion David Wise won the X Games men’s ski halfpipe and dedicated it to Smaine.

“We all did this for Kyle tonight,” Wise said on the broadcast. “It’s a little bit of an emotional day for us. We lost a friend.”

Ilia Malinin wins U.S. Figure Skating Championships despite quadruple Axel miss

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One year ago, Ilia Malinin came to the U.S. Championships as, largely, a 17-year-old unknown. He finished second to Nathan Chen in 2022 and was left off the three-man Olympic team due to his inexperience, a committee decision that lit a fire in him.

After the biggest year of change in U.S. figure skating in three decades, Malinin came to this week’s nationals in San Jose, California, as the headliner across all disciplines.

Though he fell on his quadruple Axel and doubled two other planned quads in Sunday’s free skate (the most ambitious program in history), he succeeded the absent Chen as national champion.

Malinin, the world’s second-ranked male singles skater, still landed two clean quads in Friday’s short program and three more Sunday. He totaled 287.74 points and prevailed by 10.43 over two-time Olympian Jason Brown, a bridge between the Chen and Malinin eras.

“This wasn’t the skate that I wanted,” said Malinin, who was bidding to become the second man to land six quads in one program after Chen. The Virginia chalked up the flaws at least partially to putting more recent practice time into his short program, which he skated clean on Friday after errors in previous competitions.

FIGURE SKATING NATIONALS: Full Results

Brown, a 28-year-old competing for the first time since placing sixth at the Olympics, became the oldest male singles skater to finish in the top three at nationals since Jeremy Abbott won the last of his four titles in 2014. As usual, he didn’t attempt a quad but had the highest artistic score by 9.41 points.

Brown’s seven total top-three finishes at nationals tie him with Chen, Michael WeissBrian Boitano, David Jenkins and Dick Button for the second-most in men’s singles since World War II, trailing only Todd Eldredge‘s and Hayes Jenkins‘ eight.

“I’m not saying it’s super old, but I can’t train the way I used to,” Brown said after Friday’s short program. “What Ilia is doing and the way he is pushing the sport is outstanding and incredible to watch. I cannot keep up.”

Andrew Torgashev took bronze, winning the free skate with one quad and all clean jumps. Torgashev, who competed at nationals for the first time since placing fifth in 2020 at age 18, will likely round out the three-man world team.

Japan’s Shoma Uno will likely be the favorite at worlds. He won last year’s world title, when Malinin admittedly cracked under pressure in the free skate after a fourth-place short program and ended up ninth.

That was before Malinin became the first person to land a quad Axel in competition. That was before Malinin became the story of the figure skating world this fall. That was before Malinin took over the American throne from Chen, who is studying at Yale and not expected to return to competition.

Malinin’s next step is to grab another label that Chen long held: best in the world. To do that, he must be better than he was on Sunday.

“You always learn from your experiences, and there’s always still the rest of the season to come,” he said. “I just have to be prepared and prepare a little bit extra so that doesn’t happen again.”

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