WATCH—Highlights from Federer's win over Thiem at ATP Finals:
Since losing to Kei Nishikori in straight sets, Roger Federer has decided to go into his ATP Finals matches with no practice the day before.
The world No. 3 described himself as physically fine, but he wanted to take a mental break. Federer said it was wholly a tactical decision.
“It was not about my forehand or my backhand, or my serve, or anything,” Federer told press. “Sometimes you need a break. I’m very happy that was the right decision and I was able to show a reaction from my first-round match.”
His team told him that it was important to try to enjoy himself on the court.
Federer added, "I saw the Nishikori match on the way back to the hotel. [It was] a good, long trip. That was positive. Had a lot of time to talk. We came to the conclusions, or the coaches thought, Take it easy, enjoy the day with your family."
Federer wants to stay positive moving forward, which he says he didn’t do during his opener.
"I just got a little bit edgy in the match, saw things the negative way. Kei was playing horribly for the first eight games like I was. I should have said, 'That's great, I don't need rhythm, he needs rhythm.' Things are looking good for me. It's okay to not start well. It's the first round. It's normal. Sometimes you feel that way," he said. "But I think I saw it too negative. So for me it was really important to remind myself what a thrill it is to play here at the O2. I love playing in London.
"This is when you start playing better tennis."
This Week on Tennis Channel:
ATP Finals (Sun - Sun 11.11 - 11.18) - Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer and the world's best collide in the season Finale. Live coverage begins on Tennis Channel Sunday at 7:00am EST.