Federer wins 54th career ATP title at Estoril

Federer Snaps Title Drought in Estoril

ATP World No. 1 Roger Federer snapped a five-month title drought by winning his 54th career ATP trophy at the Estoril Open on Sunday.

The Swiss was leading World No. 4 and 2003 champion Nikolay Davydenko of Russia 7-6(5) 1-2 after one hour and 20 minutes, when Davydenko retired due to a muscle strain in his left leg that he sustained towards the end of the first set.

Federer extends his perfect 12-0 record over Davydenko, who captured his second career ATP Masters Series shield at the Sony Ericsson Open in Miami, Florida, two weeks ago. It was the pair’s third clay-court meeting.

The 26 year-old Federer put Davydenko under pressure from the start, failing to convert two break points in the first game and three more in the fifth game. Davydenko went 0-4 into the tie-break.

Federer moved into a 5-1 lead in the tie-break and eventually won 7-5 in 62 minutes.

Davydenko received treatment for his injury at the end of the first set, and while he responded with a break of the Federer serve in the opening game of the second set – the 26-year-old retired minites later.

Federer has now won 54 ATP titles in 17 different countries, the most among active players on the ATP circuit.

Earlier this year, the Swiss reached the semifinals at the Australian Open in January (l. to Djokovic) and ATP Masters Series events at Indian Wells (l. to Fish). He also made a quarterfinal exit at AMS Miami (l. to Roddick).

He improves to 16-4 on the season, with his first ATP title since capturing his fourth Tennis Masters Cup title in Shanghai in November 2007.

Federer has been working at the Estoril Open with Spaniard Jose Higueras, the coach to former Roland Garros champions Jim Courier and Michael Chang. Higueras will be at ATP Masters Series Monte-Carlo next week.

Davydenko, who was on an 11-match winning streak going into his ninth career clay-court final, drops to 24-6 on the season.

Having made his debut at the Estoril Open in 2001, the Russian has a 13-5 record at the Estádio Nacional. He captured the 2003 title (d. Calleri) and finished runner-up in 2006 (l. to Nalbandian).

Davydenko drops to 17-39 lifetime against Top 10 players.

Federer wins €59,100 in prize money and 175 South African ATP Rankings points, while Davydenko collects €31,000 and 120 points.

The Estoril Open had a record attendance of 53,888 spectators this year.


Federer: “It feels great to win a title again and the circumstances were unfortunate. It would have been nice for Nikolay to finish. I think it’s the first time in my life that someone has retired against me – in 70-80 finals. It was cool in the cold conditions, but it is a great start to the clay-court season to win a title.

“It’s a good week for me to start off with. I think [Higueras] is happy for me, he didn’t confuse me and we’ll be off together to Monaco for hopefully a good week there.

“Nikolay felt something at the end of the first set, I saw Nikolay holding his leg before the changeover. I congratulated on a great run in Miami, Davis Cup and it is unfortunate to celebrate a win in this way. I’m still very proud to have won this tournament.”

image courtesy:Getty Images

News Source:Atp


~ by da|v|ned on April 20, 2008.

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