Federer makes emphatic start at Roland Garros

Roger Federer posted an emphatic first-round win at Roland Garros on Sunday, defeating Spanish qualifier Pablo Carreno-Busta 6-2, 6-2, 6-3 in 80 minutes.

"I think I started all three sets well, was able to get in the lead," said Federer. "Then playing from the lead against a player like him, it's always easier, and so I put a lot of emphasis on that."

Federer is bidding to win an 18th Grand Slam championship and second title at Roland Garros, having lifted the trophy in 2009 (d. Soderling). The Swiss has a 55-13 match record at the French Grand Slam, also reaching the final in 2006-08 and 2011.

“I thought it was a good match for me,” said Federer. “He's played many matches and won a lot this year. That really helps your confidence. And he's played a lot of matches on clay, in comparison with me. I knew it could be tricky if I didn't sustain a certain level of play and certain aggressiveness and got caught up in long rallies, which is maybe what he was looking for. Overall, I thought I did well on the serve, on the return and movement wise, as well. So clearly I'm very pleased.”

Federer hit 33 winners and converted all of his seven break points against his 21-year-old opponent.  World No. 164 Carreno-Busta was making his Grand Slam debut. The Barcelona resident has risen from No. 654 in the Emirates ATP Rankings, winning seven Futures titles and reaching the semi-finals as a qualifier at the Portugal Open (l. to Wawrinka).

Federer is closing on his 900th match win after claiming his 897th victory. Only four other players have surpassed the 900 mark: Jimmy Connors (1243), Ivan Lendl (1071) and Guillermo Vilas (924).

“Am I a favourite or not? I don't care, because it doesn't give me any more opportunities to win the tournament,” Federer said. “So you want to remain focused, calm, focused on what you want to do, and then let the storm go by.”

“Of course there is more pressure when I arrive in Wimbledon and I have to defend 2,000 points. This is not the case here. I have fewer points to defend. With tennis, you never know what's going to happen. You need to play every single match and that's what makes it interesting.”

He will face another qualifier, either Spain's Daniel Munoz-De La Nava or Indian Somdev Devvarman, for a place in the third round.

Date: 26th May 2013, Source: ATP


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