Roger Federer Kicks Off Wimbledon 2018 in Uniqlo Instead of Nike

It appears Roger Federer’s long-standing deal with Nike is truly over.

The 20-time Grand Slam victor made a striking appearance at his opening-round match at the 2018 Wimbledon Championships when he stepped on court clad in a Uniqlo-designed attire instead of Nike — the athletic apparel brand he has been wearing since 1994.

Roger Federer, Wimbledon
Roger Federer arrives at the 2018 Wimbledon Tennis Championships.
CREDIT: Rex Shutterstock

For his match against Serbia’s Dusan Lajovic, Federer opted for a headband, jacket, shirt and socks emblazoned with the Japanese outfitter’s logo. It not only marked the end of his nearly 10-year contract with Nike upon its expiration in March but also signaled the start of his months-rumored arrangement with Uniqlo, spearheaded by artistic director Christophe Lemaire.

Uniqlo U.K. confirmed the news in a tweet posted in line with the match. “Uniqlo is honoured to welcome Roger Federer as our new Global Brand Ambassador!” it read.

The 38-year-old champ reportedly secured a more than $300 million deal guaranteed for more than 10 years.

Although his all-white ensemble was sponsored by Uniqlo, Federer continued to play in the Swoosh’s footwear at the All England Club. (Nike still owns the athlete’s “RF” logo, and Uniqlo does not make tennis shoes.)

Roger Federer, Wimbledon
A closer look at Roger Federer’s shoes.
CREDIT: Rex Shutterstock

The 9-time Wimbledon winner went on to win the match in straight sets. He secured his last Grand Slam title at the Australian Open.

Roger Federer, Wimbledon
Roger Federer celebrates his win in the first round of the men’s singles at the 2018 Wimbledon Tennis Championships.
CREDIT: Rex Shutterstock

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