Two Italian girls who played quarantine tennis meet and play with their idol, Roger Federer

When I posted this video on Twitter, showing two Italian girls who were huge fans of Roger Federer, and also played “quarantine tennis” between rooftops before they met him, I got pushback that it was a fake video: a commercial proposition for advertising Barilla pasta (Federer does promote the company). But I still think this is genuine: the girls have no idea that they’re going to meet Federer. I doubt that the company would have made the whole thing up as a bit of acting.  And even if it’s semi-commercial, it’s still heartwarming.

Here’s the YouTube description:

During the lockdown, Carola and Vittoria, two teenagers from Finale Ligure, in Italy, found a creative way to play a ‘socially distanced’ tennis match: each standing on her own roof. Roger Federer and Barilla saw their video and decided to surprise the girls right in their home in Finale Ligure. Here, Roger Federer, Carola and Vittoria played a spectacular and unusual match, and even ended up sharing a memorable day under the sunny Italian sky! Pasta and sport do indeed bring people together.

Here’s a “behind the scenes” video showing how the one above was made:

h/t: Jon

14 Comments

  1. Randall Schenck
    Posted August 9, 2020 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

    That playing on the roof could be a real killer. Who gets to chase balls?

    • jezgrove
      Posted August 9, 2020 at 3:54 pm | Permalink

      According to the QI video that was included in Saturday’s Hili, they could use cats to chase and retrieve the balls as long as the rooftop is above the fifth floor IIRC.

      • jezgrove
        Posted August 9, 2020 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

        Oops, not the Saturday Hili, the Caturday felid trifecta!

  2. Bernhard
    Posted August 9, 2020 at 2:53 pm | Permalink

    According to Swiss media reports, it is not a fake video. Federer flew to Finale Ligure for the shoot.

  3. rickflick
    Posted August 9, 2020 at 2:58 pm | Permalink

    Cool! The girls seem genuinely happy. Federer is lucky. It must be nice to be able to so easily spread joy wherever you go.

  4. Posted August 9, 2020 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

    That was wonderful, the nicest thing I have seen in a long time.

  5. Andy Lowry
    Posted August 9, 2020 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

    That almost made me forget about Guido Barilla’s anti-gay language a few years ago. A few more like that, and I might even buy their pasta again.

    It was delightful to see how much fun the girls were having! Hats off to Mr. Federer for playing along so nicely.

  6. MacSlernz
    Posted August 9, 2020 at 4:03 pm | Permalink

    That is a lovely, heart-warming story. Both the girls and Mr Federer looked to be having fun. Thank you for posting this Jerry.

  7. zackoz
    Posted August 9, 2020 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

    Federer certainly has the reputation of an all-round nice guy, the Tom Hanks of the tennis courts.

    I saw him once when visiting my son in Dubai some years ago. An exhibition tournament was on in Abu Dhabi, and Federer and Nadal held a kind of hit-up event for any young local players who wanted to take turns exchanging a few shots with their heroes.

    About ten or so young hopefuls turned up, and Federer kept up a light-hearted running commentary as he rallied with them – “here’s a good forehand”, “ah, he’ll have to watch this one”, “excellent backhand there”, “o dear, missed that one”, etc.

    Some of the participants were mediocre, but Federer’s commentary more or less dried up when a lad of not more than, say, ten years old, joined in; he hit the ball with colossal force, and Roger was forced to concentrate. Later on, I saw him smiling broadly as he was photographed with this formidable young fellow. What a thrill for an aspiring new player!

  8. ploubere
    Posted August 10, 2020 at 12:20 am | Permalink

    Heartwarming, but wasn’t the whole point of the rooftop playing to be social distanced? Which was totally abandoned.

    • Posted August 10, 2020 at 3:17 am | Permalink

      That was before Italy got coronavirus under control. They are more or less back to normal now (although, their stats suggest they are currently having an increase in infections).

  9. Andrea Kenner
    Posted August 15, 2020 at 7:04 am | Permalink

    This was so sweet and cute!


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