Following the news that Nick Kyrgios had been forced to withdraw from their BNP Paribas Open quarterfinal clash, Roger Federer took to Stadium 1 on Friday to engage with the fans by chatting on court to Andrew Krasny.
"I told Tommy [Haas, Tournament Director], when he told me in the locker room, that whatever he needs, I'm happy to do," said Federer. “If there was going to be people on court, I was happy to explain myself. Nick couldn't be here because he was ill, otherwise we'd be playing a match right now.
"I was actually really looking forward to the match. That's just how tennis goes. It's a pity, but I'm really happy with my time in Indian Wells and hopefully I'm going to play a good match tomorrow."
The 35-year-old Federer will play the winner of the upcoming clash between Kei Nishikori and Jack Sock in Saturday's semifinals. The Swiss is looking to win his second title of the season, having made his comeback from a six-month injury lay-off in stunning fashion, by capturing his 18th Grand Slam championship at the Australian Open with a five-set victory over Rafael Nadal."
Drawn in the "Group of Death" at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, Federer produced a phenomenal display to beat Nadal again in the fourth round on Wednesday.
"I played unbelievably against Rafa and I couldn't be more happy," said Federer.
"The six months off last year was really difficult. I played one tournament last year where I felt normal and that was the Australian Open. At all the other tournaments, I was sick, hurt, injured or not well.
"To be back on court, feeling normal again is so nice and you feel like you're happy and fresh and I'm trying to show that to the people," continued the Basel native. "I think it's translating to my game also, I can play freely and take chances like I have nothing to lose. [It] might be one of the first times in a long, long time that I've felt this way. It's incredible that it's paying off in my results. I still feel like I'm on the comeback and we'll see what the year brings."
There was a treat in store for the fans as Federer debuted his new music video. After first presenting "The One-Handed Backhand Boys" at the Australian Open, Federer, Haas and Grigor Dimitrov reunited in Indian Wells, re-recording their David Foster track, "Hard For Me To Say I'm Sorry", in a recording studio. The resulting effort -- with a special cameo -- was played on the big screens on Stadium 1.
"We were in Australia and it was the birthday of my agent and David Foster was there, the great songwriter," explained Federer. "He was at the piano and said, 'Let's just have some fun, sing a bit'. Tommy Haas, the tournament director here of Indian Wells, and Grigor Dimitrov were there as well. We put it out because it was just too funny not to share it with the people.
"This time we went into the recording studio because we sounded so bad - not that we sound any better now! - and we re-did the video. It's actually really, really funny and so embarrassing. It's so bad and it's so good. We're still looking for names, but for the moment we're 'The One-Handed Backhand Boys'!"