Switzerland’s 20-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer will become the first living person to be celebrated on a coin in the country.
The Federal Mint, Swissmint, will release a 20 Swiss francs silver commemorative coin in January.
It plans to add a Federer SFr50 gold coin in May.
“Thank you Switzerland and Swissmint for this incredible honour and privilege,” said the 38-year-old world number three.
“In addition to his sporting brilliance, Roger Federer is above all the perfect ambassador for Switzerland,” the Bern-based Swissmint, which is responsible for the minting of Swiss coins, said in a statement on its website. “He has a unique way of embodying likeability, down-to-earthness, success and eloquence.”
In 2007, Federer was pictured on a special edition stamp released by Swiss Post in Basel, where he grew up. He was the first person to receive the honor while still alive.
The Roger Federer coin, with a legal face value of 20 Swiss francs, shows the 38-year-old superstar playing a single-handed backhand on the “head” side. It will be issued from January 23, 2020, with pre-sales starting 2 to 19 December.
A 50 franc gold coin bearing Federer’s image, but featuring a different design, will be released in 2020.
The silver coin will be sold in a limited edition of up to 95,000 coins, for 30 Swiss francs ($30.09) each. The gold coin will cost between 40 and 60 Swiss francs.
Earlier in the year, Swissmint produced special commemorative coins for the moon landing, Circus Knie and the Crocodile electric locomotive. In the past, it has also released coins celebrating national icons such as Swiss yodeling, the Swiss army knife and the oldest Swiss paddlewheel steamer.
“Thank you Switzerland and Swissmint for this incredible honour and privilege,” Federer said in a tweet on Monday morning, which included a 50-second video showing the coin being minted, combined with footage of the Swiss competing in his own Laver Cup event.
Federer has won 103 tournament titles, including a men’s record 20 Grand Slam singles trophies.
Known for his balletic movement and attacking playing style, including a stylish single-handed backhand, on the court, and his engaging personality off the court, the now 38-year-old Federer is the world’s top-paid individual athlete with $93.4 million in earnings in the past year, according to FORBES.
Federer’s consistency at the top of the game, combined with exceptional communication skills (he is fluent in four languages), have earned him a string of endorsements with blue-chip companies including Swiss bank Credit-Suisse, German car maker Mercedes-Benz and Japanese apparel brand Uniqlo.
Federer is also active in philanthropy. His Roger Federer Foundation has educated more than one million children in Africa, and raised more than $40 million, since it was launched in 2003. In 2006, he became the first Swiss UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador.
Federer, a father of four with his wife Mirka, is currently enjoying some time off during the off-season before he heads to Melbourne for the Australian Open in the new year. He finished his season in third place on the rankings of the men’s ATP Tour, with a 53-10 record. He won four titles and took home $7.6 million in prize money.
“One could almost lose count of his tennis records –he spent 237 consecutive weeks as world No. 1, holds the most grand slam men’s singles titles (20), and has won 103 singles titles in total so far,” said Swissmint. “These records and his versatile playing style make him probably the greatest tennis player of all time.”
— Roger Federer (@rogerfederer) December 2, 2019