Back in 2013, Roger Federer embraced one of his worst seasons after becoming a pro, winning only one title in Halle and missing a chance to add at least crowns to his collection for the first time since 2001! Ready to bounce back, Roger kicked off the 2014 season with even higher motivation to get back into the top-5 and fight for the biggest titles again, adding one of his childhood idols Stefan Edberg to his coaching staff.
Starting the season in Brisbane, Roger lost to Lleyton Hewitt in the final and headed to Melbourne to compete at the 57th straight Major, writing the record books after leaving Wayne Ferreira on 56 and becoming an Open era leader; counting to 65 before withdrawing from Roland Garros 2016.
On January 14, Roger Federer opened the Australian Open run with a commanding 6-4, 6-4, 6-2 win over James Duckworth in an hour and 43 minutes, marking the best possible start of his collaboration with Stefan Edberg who was presented as his coach.
It was a solid tournament opener for the Swiss who lost only five points behind the first serve, dropping 19 points in 14 service games and facing only one break point in the entire encounter, fending it off to mount the pressure on the Aussie all the time.
Making his third straight appearance at home Major, James was hoping for a miracle against world no. 6, landing 13 aces but still offering 17 break chances to Roger, getting broken four times to propel the Swiss into the second round.
Taming his shots nicely, Federer fired 30 winners and 17 unforced errors while Duckworth counted to 34 winners and 38 mistakes, giving his best to impose the strokes but achieving that with too many unforced errors along the way.
James fended off break points in the very first game of the match and reached a couple of deuces on the return in game two before experienced another tough service game to remain 2-1 in front. Federer finally grabbed a break in the fifth game following a smash winner, confirming it with a hold at love and missing more chances in the next game that could have pushed him further in front.
Serving for the set at 5-4, Roger fired three service winners to wrap up the opener in 40 minutes, having to work harder in set number two as Duckworth stayed in touch until 3-3 when Federer broke him to move ahead. In the next game, the Swiss repelled a break chance with a service winner and held at love in game ten to seal the second set and take another step towards the finish line.
Duckworth suffered a break at the beginning of the third set and there was no way back for him from there, saving multiple break points in the third game before spraying a backhand error to go 4-1 down, with Federer firing a service winner three games later to find himself in the second round.