Roger Federer’s biggest supporters are his family.
The tennis player first met his wife Mirka, also a tennis player, when they represented Switzerland at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney. They finally got married in 2009.
They have since grown into a family of six, welcoming two sets of identical twins.
In July 2009 the couple welcomed twin daughters Charlene Riva and Myla Rose and in 2014 they welcomed another set of identical twins, boys Leo and Lenny.
Although Federer doesn’t often discuss his family life publicly, his children have been in the stands supporting him at big games.
In a recent interview with Today before his retirement, he talked about taking them on the road with him, noting that it was a no-brainer.
“Oh, it was the only way,” he told Savannah Guthrie. “I said, ‘I would never go on the road without my children.’ I prefer to retire [than travel without them]. Then I should have retired 10 years ago.”
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Learn more about Federer’s upcoming children.
Myla Rose Federer and Charlene Riva Federer
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On July 23, 2009, Roger and Mirka became parents for the first time welcoming identical twins, Myla Rose Federer and Charlene Riva Federer. “This is the happiest day of our lives,” he said in a statement at the time. “Mirka, Myla and Charlene are all healthy and doing great.”
The couple initially chose not to reveal they were welcoming twins, with Federer telling The New York Times he decided to “just play the game until the very end”.
“I had to really fight,” he shared. “I had a couple [of interviews] where I was like, ‘We’re so excited to have babies,’ and I was like, ‘Does this sound like this already?'”
After they were born, the tennis star opened up to PEOPLE about becoming a father for the first time. “It’s been a lot of fun being a dad and spending time with them,” he said of his then 6-week-old twins. “I keep myself busy as much as possible because every day is something new and different. I don’t want to miss anything.”
“It’s an amazing feeling to be called dad,” he added. “I’m very proud of this title.”
While Myla and Charlene have shown up to various tennis tournaments to support their dad, Roger has previously said his daughters aren’t as keen on the sport as he is.
“They’ll take their doll instead of a tennis racket and be happy about it,” Federer told PEOPLE during the 2011 US Open press conference. [with a racket] but they get discouraged after 30 seconds. They don’t try to imitate me either.”
Leo Federer and Lenny Federer
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On Christmas Eve 2013, Roger and Mirka made the happy announcement that they were expecting again. “Mirka and I are so excited to share the news that Myla and Charlene will be big sisters in 2014! Happy Holidays,” he wrote on Twitter. On May 6, 2014, the couple welcomed another set of identical twins, sons Leo Federer and Lenny Federer.
The couple’s boys have also been at the center of various championships, including his historic eighth men’s singles championship at Wimbledon in 2017.
“I was so deeply touched by my performance in the tournament from start to finish,” he said on Today after the victory. “I looked up in the stands and saw my kids…then I started to realize that I was a real Wimbledon champion.”
“I saw the boys for the first time, and [seeing] seeing them come to center court and knowing how much center court means to me, and seeing them as not knowing what’s going on,” Federer laughed. “And then the girls were there too and my wife was moved. It really hit me.”
Talk with Today in September 2022, the tennis star opened up about how welcoming her sons has really changed her approach to her career.
“I have twin girls, as you know, Myla and Charlene. They were born in 2009, just after I became, I think was world number one,” he told Guthrie. “Girls were born and from that point on, 2010 and 2011, I didn’t win any Slams. I remember changing diapers, bathing girls and just being a dad.”
He continued: “But when the boys were born, I mean, it rocked the boat, obviously, because going on the road with four kids every week was tough, to say the least. And from being maybe the dominator, I became the challenger. And I enjoyed that role, too. In fact, I was really starved throughout.”
He also shared with Guthrie that one of his sons had a fondness for tennis, but did not share which one could follow in his footsteps.