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The Federers’ (Non-Tennis!) Double Doubles

The Federers’ (Non-Tennis!) Double Doubles

Roger Federer has done the doubles again – but we’re not talking tennis here!

Almost five years ago, in July 2009, 32-year-old Federer and his wife Mirka, a former professional tennis player herself, announced the birth of their daughters, identical twins Myla Rose and Charlene Riva.

Last Christmas Eve, Federer had some more exciting news that he wanted to share with his fans, as well as the rest of the world: he was going to become a father again. However, what he wasn’t willing to share was when he when he was expecting to meet this new addition to his family – or whether another set of twins were on their way.

On Tuesday morning, on his Facebook page Federer announced that he would not be carrying on with the Madrid Open this year, an event he has already won three times. “I have decided to withdraw from Madrid to be with my wife Mirka during these next few exciting weeks for our family,” he wrote. He apologised to his fans, adding that he hoped to be back in the Madrid Tour next year, and will be training near his home so he could spend time with his family.

Later that night, he had a different announcement to make, but this time on Twitter, tweeting, “Mirka and I are so incredibly happy to share that Leo and Lenny were born this evening!”

That’s right – another set of twins, but this time it was a pair of boys. While there had been obvious speculation as to whether Mirka was expecting twins again, it’s unlikely anyone thought it would actually happen, and they managed to keep it a very closely guarded secret.

Twins are around a one in 33 occurrence – around 3% of pregnancies – and while it is thought to be about four times more likely for a woman who has already given birth to twins to have a second set of twins, it is still a rarity. The rates tend to vary from country to country, but it is thought to be around a one in 70,000 odds.

Twins also have a tendency to run in families, and the Federers are certainly a testament to that with Diana, Federer’s sister, being a mother of a set of twins, as well.

Jokes have been bandied about along the lines of “Federer’s mixed doubles”, with Ladbrokes getting in on the fun. The betting shop chain is offering odds of a staggering 10,000 to one that all four of the Federer children will meet in a mixed-doubles Wimbledon final.

Jessica Bridge, Ladbrokes spokesperson, said that because the odds of the bet are so high, the company has placed a limit of £10 for a wager. “Not too surprisingly we haven’t seen a single bet yet, as you are going to need to wait about 20 years to collect any winnings!”

Other odds issued include any combination of Federer offspring winning a Wimbledon doubles titles, 33 to one; any of the children to win a Wimbledon singles title, 100 to one; and the odds of a third set of twins in the future at 1,000 to one.

Congratulations to Roger and Mirka Federer on the birth of their twin boys!


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