Federer to play in Hopman Cup

World number three Roger Federer will be playing in January's Hopman Cup in Perth for the first time since his last appearance in the mixed doubles tournament there 15 years ago.

The event will see Federer team up with Swiss countryman and world No.16 Belinda Bencic at the Perth Arena from 1-7 January 2017.

The 17-time grand slam winner won the event as a 19-year-old in 2001 when he partnered Martina Hingis, and in 2002 he played in the event with Miroslava Vavrinec, who he is now married to and is known to everyone as Mirka Federer.

He is also expected to partner Hingis again at the Rio Olympics next month for Switzerland.

In an interview carried on the Tennis Australia site, Federer confirmed his participation and said he was looking forward to the tournament.

“I think it will be a perfect tournament for me to start the season,” said Federer.

“I like to play in new places (like the Perth Arena) … It’s always really exciting, so I can’t wait.

“I thought on TV it looked great, the atmosphere seemed really nice, the stadium looked fantastic so I’m looking forward to playing in that environment.”

This will be Bencic's first time playing with Federer and said in an interview that she was looking forward to partnering him, including representing her country in Perth.

“I’m very much looking forward to playing with Roger in the mixed doubles and representing my country at the Hopman Cup,” Bencic said.

“I’ve not been to Perth before but I’ve heard great things and can’t wait to check out the city.”

Paul Kilderry, the Hopman Cup Tournament Director, said he was thrilled to have both Federer and Bencic representing Switzerland at the event.

“We’re extremely excited that Roger Federer and Belinda Bencic have decided to start the new year in Perth,” Kilderry said.

“The atmosphere at the 2016 event was electric and no doubt the excitement and buzz will be even more so when Switzerland takes to the court next year.

“The opportunity to see Federer, one of the greatest players of all time, will be like no other and I look forward to seeing all his fans in Western Australia visit Perth Arena for a terrific week.”