When Lleyton Hewitt plays Roger Federer in the final of the Brisbane International on Sunday, the two players will be reigniting a rivalry that began 15 years ago.
The two first met in Lyon in a match the Hewitt won. Hewitt also trumped Federer in dramatic fashion at the Davis Cup in 2003, mounting a furious comeback to dethrone the Swiss tennis star.
Speaking with reporters on the eve of the Brisbane final, Hewitt said he’s excited to take on Federer given their competitive history:
Obviously, Roger and I have a good history and a lot of tough matches in the past in slams, Davis Cups and everything. I’m going to enjoy it (Reuters).
Hewitt also reminisced about the victory at the Davis Cup:
It has to be one (of my best). In the conditions and over five sets and he was the reigning Wimbledon champion only a couple months before that as well.
Federer also chimed in about their longstanding rivalry:
We go back 17 years – our coaches back in the day were best friends. It’s always special when we play.