Federer breezes past Becker in Dubai opener

Fourth seed Roger Federer opened his bid for a sixth Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships crown on Monday with a 6-1, 6-4 victory over Benjamin Becker in just 62 minutes.

The Swiss improved to a 38-5 event record as he broke Becker on three occasions and won 76 per cent of his service points. He has a 4-0 Head to Head record over the No. 90-ranked Becker.

"I'm extremely happy with today's match," said Federer. "Coming out and playing free tennis like that right off the bat is a good feeling. I know probably Benjamin has been doing a lot of travelling back and forth, Australia, Europe, America, back to Dubai, back for Indian Wells and Miami, but you've got to take advantage of that. I have been here for some time. I had a good preparation. I'm happy it paid off thus far."

Federer raced through the first set against Becker in 22 minutes.

''Things can run away very quickly here,'' Federer said. ''If you look at the winner list from here, it's guys who play well on grass courts.

''It's worth it to go for your shots and you feel like risky tennis will be rewarded.''

In the second set, Becker challenged better by playing himself into points. The match highlight was undoubtedly an audacious shot through the legs from Federer at 3-2 in the second as he set up a clash with either Radek Stepanek or Michael Russell.

The 32-year-old Federer lifted the Dubai trophy in 2003-05, 2007 and 2012. The Basel native is looking to win his first ATP World Tour title of the season, building on the strong start he made in January by reaching the final of the Brisbane International (l. to Hewitt) and the semi-finals of the Australian Open (l. to Nadal).

Date: 24th February 2014, Source: ATP


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