Former Nike tennis director Mike Nakajima described Roger Federer as incredibly caring and respectful, as the Swiss once stayed for four hours at an event he was only supposed to stay for one hour. Nakajima, who was Nike’s director of tennis for 29 years, once organized an event where Federer was scheduled to appear and speak for an hour with children and adults.
In the end, Federer ended up staying on the spot for four hours. “People love to hate successful people. They’re jealous. But it always amazes me that no one ever says anything negative about Roger. The way he presents himself to others, others love him.
Because he treats others with respect, he knows the audience and can tailor his conversation accordingly. He knows how to talk to adults and children. I’ve been to an event where he was supposed to be there for an hour and he was there for four hours.
Four hours! Who does that? He knows that these are the people who see him play. It’s the people who sponsor you. He gets it,” Nakajima told CNN. During his nearly three decades with Nike, Nakajima had the opportunity to work with and meet some of the greatest athletes in the history of the sport.
Now, Nakajima admits there were cases where he noticed a superstar athlete change because of money and fame. But in the case of Federer, he never saw anything like it, as the Swiss tennis icon was always the same caring and humble person.
“I’ve had the privilege of meeting so many world-class athletes. He’s high on my list as far as Roger, the game changer, because of what a great person he is. Yes, he has so much more. money and much more of everything.”
Roger Federer won 20 Grand Slam titles
During an exclusive interview with Khaleej Times, Colm McLoughlin reveals how this tennis tournament has played a huge role in Dubai’s status as one of the world’s best cities.
“We all come to a stage where we have to retire. We are delighted that Roger Federer won our tournament. He was world number one for many years, one of the top three winners of the Grand Slam tournament in the world, and he has a residence in Dubai.
Of course, even if he is not playing, he is always welcome to attend. He has been a very courteous person. He has done many things we have asked him to do. He has been very important in the promotion of the Dubai Tennis Championships, not just by winning it alone.
When he won his eighth tournament in Dubai, it also coincided with his 100th victory in his career. You know he is the among few players to have won 100 or more titles. He has also won 20 Grand Slams. Yes, Roger Federer was a great ambassador for us, and we were always pleased that he came and played here.”