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Federer wins 10th Basel title

Roger Federer won his 10th Swiss Indoors Basel title, defeating Alex De Minaur 6-2, 6-2 to secure what the Swiss legend described as "an unbelievable" success at the home-town tournament.

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Federer to play 2020 Tokyo Olympics

Roger Federer will go for gold in 2020. The Swiss star confirmed that he will compete for Switzerland at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.

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Federer wins 10th Halle title

Roger Federer made history in Halle, defeating David Goffin 7-6 (2), 6-1 to win a record 10th Noventi Open title. It is the first time that Federer has earned 10 crowns at one tournament.

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Federer wins fourth Miami Open title

Roger Federer produced a championship masterclass under the Florida sun, dominating reigning champ John Isner 6-1, 6-4 to win his fourth Miami title.

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Federer makes history in Dubai, wins 100th title

Roger Federer made history at the Dubai Duty Free Championships, defeating reigning Next Gen ATP Finals champion Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-4, 6-4 to win his 100th tour-level title.

Federer lost to Nadal in the quarterfinals of Indian Wells

Roger Federer's title defense at the BNP Paribas Open came to a surprisingly abrupt halt on Thursday when he lost to his long-time rival Rafa Nadal 6-4 6-2 in the quarter-finals.

Lured by the anticipation of another duel between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal, fans packed the main stadium at the BNP Paribas Open on a sultry evening in the desert.

After all, it was the first time in ATP World Tour history that two players with 28 Grand Slam titles between them were meeting up.

What resulted, however, wasn't vintage Federer vs. Nadal.

With Nadal recovering from a left knee injury that knocked him out for seven months and Federer nursing a delicate back, they produced something less than classic Thursday night.

Capitalizing on Federer's errors, Nadal won their quarterfinal 6-4, 6-2 in the earliest meeting between the rivals since they first played each other in 2004.

''I played a fantastic first set,'' Nadal said. ''The second set was strange. Roger didn't fight as usual. Probably he had some back problems and he didn't feel enough comfortable to keep fighting.''

Nadal needed barely 1 1/2 hours to close out the defending champion in their 29th career meeting and the first in a quarterfinal. Nadal faced just two break points on his serve in the match.

Nadal and Federer usually don't play each other until the semifinals and finals of tournaments, but the Indian Wells draw pitted them against each other in their earliest meeting since a third-round match at Miami nine years ago.

''You miss these moments this whole time, but play against Roger in any moment in any situation is special,'' Nadal said.

Nadal returned to the tour a month ago, winning two of three tournaments on clay after missing seven months because of a left knee injury. He had his knee wrapped and at times appeared to have a slight limp.

''No question, he's a bit careful at times, his movement. That's totally normal,'' Federer said. ''Hasn't played for some time on hard court. I don't know if it's careful or if it's just getting used to it again.''

Federer, at 31 the oldest player left in the draw, tweaked his back earlier in the tournament.

''I'm happy to be out there and able to compete, but it's obviously a small issue,'' he said. ''That doesn't work against guys like Rafa, obviously.''

Nadal served a love game to even the first set 3-all, then earned the only break in the next game, taking a 4-3 lead on a backhand passing shot. He went on to win two of the final three games as Federer pulled shots wide or dumped them into the net.

''The longer the match went on, I realized I had to change up my game. I played differently than I was hoping to be able to,'' said Federer, who started attacking more with mixed results in the second set. He got more comfortable as the match went on. Obviously, once I was down a set I knew it was going to be difficult.''

Federer faced a slew of break points in the second set, with Nadal converting in two of the first three games to take a 3-0 lead.

Federer briefly rallied, gaining one break back at 3-1, then losing just one point on his serve in the next game to get to 3-2. But Nadal won the final three games to claim the match in front of Andre Agassi.

''You could see at least I could serve full basically, and that always gives you a direction,'' said Federer, adding that he didn't want to talk about his back too much because I don't like to undermine his performance, either.''

A year ago, Federer beat Nadal 6-3, 6-4 in the semifinals on his way to a fourth Indian Wells title. Nadal leads their career series 19-10, and evened their head-to-head mark on hard courts at 6-6.

Still, Nadal wasn't feeling boastful. ''If I think that I am better than him because I beat him 19 against 10, I will be very stupid and very arrogant,'' he said. ''This is not the case.''

Following his quarter-final exit from Indian Wells, Federer plans to return to his native Switzerland to map out his playing schedule going forward.

"I'll go back for the next few days and weeks and sort of consider what's next," said the Swiss, who will skip next week's ATP Masters 1000 event in Miami. "Normally I'd like to practice real hard and rest up and recover from this week.

"It's been a really difficult week for me, so I'm happy to have played a decent tournament. Overall under the circumstances I'm happy. I'll probably maintain my schedule, but you never know."

Date: 15th March 2013, Source: AP and Reuters

Federer battles into last eight at Indian Wells

Defending champion Roger Federer rallied for a 6-3, 6-7 (4), 7-5 victory over Swiss compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka on Wednesday to reach the quarterfinals of the BNP Paribas Open.

Federer, a four-times champion at Indian Wells, appeared to be in cruise control when serving for the match at 5-4 in the second set but was broken to love before his opponent went on to clinch the tiebreak 7-4.

Wawrinka led 2-1 with a break in the third set, but could not consolidate and Federer ultimately got the decisive break in the 12th game.

"I definitely got a bit lucky here tonight," Federer said courtside after coming out on top of a fluctuating contest lasting two hours 20 minutes.

"But I'm very happy to come through against Stan, who is a very good friend of mine."

Federer improved to 13-1 against the 18th-seeded Wawrinka, who was broken twice in the final set played in front of tennis great Rod Laver.

Federer has won 29 of 34 sets in their 15 career matches, with Wawrinka's lone win coming four years ago on clay in Monte Carlo.

Federer next plays either No. 5 Rafael Nadal or Latvian qualifier Ernests Gulbis, who followed him under the lights on stadium court.

Date: 14th March 2013, Source: AP and Reuters

Federer among Sports Illustrated's power players

Roger Federer is among the Top 10 power players of world sport according to Sports Illustrated, the U.S. magazine.

The Swiss superstar is No. 3 in the list, behind NBA basketball star LeBron James and golfer Tiger Woods. Serena Williams, the WTA World No. 1, is seventh overall.

Sports Illustrated writes, “Never mind that he’s the most decorated men’s tennis player ever, is there a more likeable athlete?

“A 2011 Reputation Institute study listed Federer, 31, as the second-most-respected man in the world - behind only Nelson Mandela.”

Federer will play his compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka in the BNP Paribas Open fourth round on Wednesday at the ATP World Tour Masters 1000 event in Indian Wells.

Date: 12th March 2013, Source: ATP

Federer triumphant after earthquake & back injury

Defending champion Roger Federer beat Ivan Dodig of Croatia 6-3 6-1 in the third round of the BNP Paribas Open on Monday, with the Swiss star tweaking his back near the end of the match.

Federer earned his 890th career ATP Tour victory, joining Jimmy Connors, Ivan Lendl and Guillermo Vilas as the only men to have won at least that many matches in the Open era.

Federer is seeking his first tournament title of the year at an event where he has won four championships and has a 41-8 career record. He now has Tuesday off to give his back a rest.

"It's not the first time it's happened in my career, so, I know how to deal with it," said the world number two."

"I'm walking fine, I have a day off tomorrow. Everything is all right," added Federer. "It's happened during grand slams, during tournaments, in practice."

"It's just something you learn to deal with. And as long as I keep on playing, it's all right. I also know I have a longer break to recover so, from that standpoint, I'm not worried at all."

Prior to Federer's victory, a 4.7 magnitude earthquake struck at 9.55am near Indian Wells. It occurred before the day's matches had begun, although the Indian Wells Tennis Garden was busy with fans and workers, many of whom said they felt a strong jolt.

Federer, who outclassed Dodig in all areas and dictated the tempo of the match, ran out of the house where he is staying during the tournament.

"I didn't know how long it was going to last, if it was going to get worse from there, or if the worst was already past," he said.

"It was a very strange feeling to have because you see the windows shaking and you look up and realise you're under a structure. It was quite scary for a second there."

The Swiss now meets compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka in round four. Wawrinka was a 6-4 7-5 winner over Lleyton Hewitt.

Federer has a commanding 12-1 lead over Wawrinka, with whom he won the doubles gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Wawrinka’s lone victory came on clay in Monte-Carlo four years ago.

Date: 12th March 2013, Source: ESPN and Reuters

Federer opens Indian Wells title defence

Roger Federer opened his title defence at the BNP Paribas Open on Saturday with a 6-2, 6-3 victory over Denis Istomin of Uzbekistan. The Swiss improved to a 40-8 record at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden, lifting the trophy in 2004-‘06 and 2012 (d. Isner).

Federer needed just 58 minutes to beat Istomin for the fourth time in four meetings. He won 32 of 36 of his service points and broke Istomin four times from seven opportunities.

"It felt good from the start and was able to maintain that level of play," said Federer. "I never thought he got into the match at all. That gives you obviously even more confidence."

Federer, who won his fourth title here last year, lost just four points on serve, all in the first set. Two of those were by double faults, and he never faced a break point and won 96 percent of his first serves.

Federer has won a record 21 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 trophies. In the third round, Federer will face Croatia’s Ivan Dodig, who defeated Julien Benneteau of France 6-4, 6-2 in 82 minutes.

Date: 10th March 2013, Source: ATP and AP

Roger Federer was delighted to welcome back Rafa Nadal

Roger Federer has been presented a challenging road to a successful title defence at the BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells. One man the Swiss maestro could potentially face off against in the quarter-finals is chief rival Rafael Nadal, a player Federer is thrilled to have back competing on the ATP World Tour.

“I only just saw him yesterday after my practice. I was really excited to see him again,” said Federer. “We hadn’t had much contact. I think he wanted to get away from it all, which I really understand. I was really happy to see him doing so well in Acapulco. It’s great to see him here playing on the hard courts. I’m hoping to catch up with him this week.”

Federer returns to one of his favorite venues for the Indian Wells event but the Swiss maestro is still seeking his first ATP title of the year after producing contrasting form in his first three tournaments.

"I played really well in Australia," said Federer, a 17-times grand slam champion. "Rotterdam, I was disappointed because I thought I could have done better. I played so well the year before and I never really got going against Benneteau."

"And in Dubai I was a bit unfortunate losing with three match points, and having to explain the loss when you feel you should be preparing for the final."

"What happened, happened. I am playing fine. Obviously I would have hoped to have won a tournament by now but overall I am happy with my game."

While Federer and Nadal, as seeded players, have a bye into the second round at Indian Wells.

If Federer is to get things going again, Indian Wells may just be the place the start. In 2012, the 21-time ATP World Tour Masters 1000 champion became the first male to triumph at the event four times, defeating John Isner in last year final.

“Indian Wells is peaceful and nice and quiet for my family and I. The fans come out here and really know the game of tennis,” said Federer. “The facilities are becoming more fantastic for everyone involved. That’s exciting to see. And then it has a beautiful center court with a great atmosphere. It’s a prestigious tournament. All the greats show up here every year and you want to compete with the best.”

Date: 8th March 2013, Source: ATP and Reuters

Federer, Nadal on quarter-final collision course at Indian Wells

Defending champion Roger Federer could meet his great rival Rafael Nadal in the quarter-finals of the BNP Paribas Open in what is a testing draw for the 31-year-old Swiss. Even before a potential meeting with Nadal, Federer could have a re-match of last year’s final against American John Isner in the fourth round.

Federer is seeded No. 2 on his 13th appearance at the Indian Wells Tennis Garden and opens his title defence against either Denis Istomin or a qualifier. Also in his section is French No. 28 seed Julien Benneteau, whom he lost to in last month’s Rotterdam quarter-finals, countryman Stanislas Wawrinka and two-time former champion Lleyton Hewitt. Federer has a 39-8 record at this ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament, winning the title in 2004-2006 and 2012.

Nadal, seeded fifth, made a welcome return to the ATP World Tour on clay in South America last month, winning the Acapulco and Sao Paulo titles and finishing runner-up in Vina del Mar. He had been sidelined for seven months with a left knee injury. The Spaniard, who lifted the Indian Wells trophy in 2007 (d. Djokovic) and 2009 (d. Murray), faces either American Ryan Harrison or Japan’s Go Soeda in his opener. He could also encounter challenges from No. 20 seed Andreas Seppi, Marcos Baghdatis and No. 9 seed Janko Tipsarevic in his section.

World No. 1 Novak Djokovic and No. 3 Andy Murray are on a semi-final collision course. The two contested the Australian Open final in January, and also met twice in major finals last year. Djokovic is on a 13-match unbeaten roll in 2013, winning the Australian Open and Dubai (d. Berdych) titles, and is chasing his third trophy in Indian Wells, following victories in 2008 (d. Fish) and 2011 (d. Nadal).

The Serb begins his campaign against either Fabio Fognini of Italy or Slovenia’s Aljaz Bedene, with a potential third-round meeting against Grigor Dimitrov, the No. 31 seed from Bulgaria. Djokovic is in the same section as No. 14 seed Juan Monaco and No. 23 Sam Querrey and is projected to face eighth-seeded Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the quarter-finals. However, Tsonga faces a tough route through to the final eight, with the returning Mardy Fish, No. 12 seed Marin Cilic and No. 17 Milos Raonic all in his section.

Murray is playing his first tournament since the Australian Open and could overtake Federer at No. 2 in the Emirates ATP Rankings after the tournament. The Scot, who has lost his opening match on his past two visits to Indian Wells, faces either Evgeny Donskoy of Russia or Japan’s Tatsuma Ito in the second round. Murray is seeded to meet No. 26 seed Martin Klizan in the third round and could face either Japan’s No. 16 seed Kei Nishikori or Ukrainian No. 22 seed Alexandr Dolgopolov in the fourth round.

Seventh seed Juan Martin del Potro is Murray’s projected quarter-final opponent. The Argentine is chasing his first ATP World Tour Masters 1000 crown and is in the same section of the draw as 11th seed Nicolas Almagro, No. 19 Tommy Haas and No. 25 Jeremy Chardy.

Fourth seed David Ferrer lies in the bottom half of the draw with Federer and Nadal and begins against either Victor Hanescu or Kevin Anderson. The Spaniard, who has already won two ATP World Tour titles this year, has a possible quarter-final contest with sixth seed Tomas Berdych. Tenth seed Richard Gasquet, No. 13 Gilles Simon and No. 24 Jerzy Janowicz also challenge in that quarter of the draw.

Date: 6th March 2013, Source: ATP

Loss to Tomas Berdych in Dubai not major concern for FedEx

Tomas Berdych pulled off a surprising victory that will deny tennis fans a showdown between Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic at the Dubai Championships.

The Swiss legend will certainly be disappointed over the result, but the loss is not a reason to worry going forward.

The semifinal was a back-and-forth affair, and both Berdych and Federer had their chances to win. Ultimately, Berdych saved three match points and was on the right side of the 3-6, 7-6 (8), 6-4 score line.

After the contest, Federer said the following, via the BBC:

Obviously I leave this match with a lot of regrets - serving for the match, having chances in the beginning of the second when he wasn't quite in the match yet to go a set and a break up. There were a few points where things just didn't happen for me.

Berdych is a player who has given Federer trouble historically.

The 27-year-old Czech has now won five of the last eight meetings between the two players.

Still, Federer was very much competitive in this match, and if not for uncharacteristic errors - he had five double-faults compared to Berdych’s two - he likely would be in the finals.

The defending champion at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships experienced déjà vu with Berdych in Friday’s semi-finals, relinquishing three match points in a second set tie-break before ultimately losing to the sixth-ranked Czech in three sets. Federer also failed to lock up victory over Berdych when holding match point at the Sony Open Tennis in Miami three years ago, and in a Davis Cup doubles rubber with Yves Allegro in 2007, the two blew a match point and a two-set lead against Berdych and Radek Stepanek.

“It's just disappointing losing this way. I think it's the third time I lost [with] match points against Tomas, twice in singles and once in doubles,” reflected Federer. “It's just one of those matches you feel you should have won but end up losing. When you lose with match points, you always have a lot of regrets. That's one of these matches again tonight.”

The ATP Tour is long and grueling, and even the greatest player to ever lift a racket has off days.

That is exactly why he should not be overly concerned with the loss.

At 31 years old, he is not getting any younger, and the day when his body simply will not allow him to be an elite athlete anymore is not that far away.

When this moment arrives, Federer will give his best effort and possibly still lose.

If his shots were dropping against Berdych and he was not making errors, but he still came out on the losing end, this would be extremely concerning.

But the point in Federer’s career when his best will not be enough to beat a player like Berdych has not yet arrived.

Unable to retain his trophies in Rotterdam and now Dubai, Federer will look to make it third time’s the charm at next week's BNP Paribas Open in Indian Wells, the first ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament of the season. In the 2012 final, Federer defeated John Isner to become the first male to win four trophies at the event.

Last year’s winning performance at Wimbledon and his climb back to the No. 1 world ranking was a powerful reminder that he is still capable of being a dominant player. It is not out of the question for him to deliver more matches like this during the remaining majors in 2013.

This was nothing more than a bad day for Federer, and he should not dwell on the loss for very long.

Date: 2nd March 2013, Source: Bleacher Report and ATP

Berdych upsets Federer in Dubai semis

Tomas Berdych saved three match points before upsetting defending champion Roger Federer 3-6, 7-6 (8), 6-4 to earn a spot in the final of the Dubai Championships against Novak Djokovic.

Berdych came under pressure at 3-4 in the first set, dropping to 0/30, and went onto lose his serve after two deep forehands from Federer got the Czech off balance. Federer closed out the 38-minute set with a service hold to love.

In the second set, Federer was broken at 2-3, 15/40, when he snatched at a forehand, hitting the ball into the net. Berdych confirmed the break to love for a 5-2 lead.

Berdych, who has strengthened his core during the off-season and is a better mover around the court, served for the set a 5-3 but two forehand errors helped Federer get back into the pair’s 16th meeting.

Federer was able to convert three break point opportunities at 5-5 and was later forced to save one set point at 5-6, 30/40 en route to the second set tie-break.

The Swiss opened up a 6-4 lead, courtesy of Berdych errors, but some clever service placement got the Czech another set point at 7-6 in the tie-break. Federer’s third match point chance came and went at 8-7, before Berdych converted his third set point opportunity with a forehand return winner off a second serve.

Berdych broke Federer to 30 at 2-2 in the deciding set to silence the majority of the supporters. Under enormous pressure, Federer played aggressively in the seventh game and saved three break points.

Berdych recovered from 0/30 at 4-3 and then squandered his first match point opportunity in the next game with a forehand into the net. Federer saved a second match point with a powerful first serve.

Minutes later, when serving, Berdych closed out his 14th match win of 2013.

''Pity to lose that one, but Tomas did well to hang in there,'' Federer said. ''Obviously, I leave this match with a lot of regrets.''

Federer only converted 2 of 11 break points and his serve waivered in crucial moments, especially in the tiebreaker.

''The match was in my racket. You do all the right things for so long, and then at the end you've got to explain why you didn't hit two shots decent,'' he said. ''So it's disappointing.''

Federer is now 11-6 against Berdych in head to head.

Date: 1st March 2013, Source: ATP and Reuters