ATP Cincinnati: Roger Federer follows Novak Djokovic after swift triumph


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ATP Cincinnati: Roger Federer follows Novak Djokovic after swift triumph

In the first encounter after that memorable Wimbledon final, the seven-time Cincinnati champion Roger Federer took down Juan Ignacio Londero 6-3, 6-4 in an hour for the 47th victory at this tournament. It was a rock-solid performance from the Swiss outside a few loose backhands, serving well and dropping 11 points behind the initial shot to fend off the only break point he faced.

On the other hand, he seized one break in each set to control the scoreboard and march over the finish line in style, finishing the job with 26 winners and 19 unforced errors, leaving Londero on a 10-13 ratio. The opening set lasted for only 22 minutes, with more than half of the unreturned points on both sides and just nine points won by the returners.

Federer held in the first game with a service winner and gained a massive lead after two double faults from the Argentine in game two, creating the gap after only four minutes and landing an ace in game three to confirm the advantage.

Londero got his name on the scoreboard with a service winner in game four, reducing the deficit and staying in touch with Roger in the rest of the set, with returners taking one point in the last six games! Federer hit four service winners in the fifth game, repeating that a couple of minutes later with more unreturned serves, moving 5-2 up in 16 minutes and sealing the deal with a similar contest at 5-3, wrapping up the opener in 21 minutes with an ace in that ninth game.

Playing well after that break he suffered, Juan Ignacio held at 30 at the beginning of the second set after forcing an error from Roger who landed four winners in the second game to level the score at 1-1. Finding the rhythm on serve, Londero delivered another comfortable hold for a 2-1 and Federer followed that with two service winners and two from his volley in the fourth game to match the rival's pace and continue to bring the games home in no time at all.

The rain halted the action after the opening two points of the fifth game and Roger wasted a break chance once they returned, converting the second one after a double fault from Londero to move 3-2 in front. Still, Federer's backhand didn't work well at those moments, offering a break chance to Londero in the next game and saving it with a half-volley winner, securing the game with two service winners for a 4-2 advantage.

Juan Ignacio held with an ace in game seven to remain within one break deficit before Roger blasted four winners to extend the lead to 5-3, forcing the rival to serve for staying in the encounter. A forehand winner gave Federer a match point on the return in game nine, denied by a volley winner from Londero who held with two good serves to stay within one break behind Roger.

Serving for the victory, the Swiss sealed the deal with two winners at 30-30 in game ten, moving into the third round without spending too much time on the court in his first match in a month.