Tommy Haas created a stunning comeback win over Roger Federer in Stuttgart five years ago and that later turned out to be the final pro win of the German's career. In 2017 June, Haas met his long-time friend Federer in the Stuttgart round-of-16.
Before that match, Haas and Federer met six times on grass - four times in Halle and twice at Wimbledon. Going into their Stuttgart meeting, Federer was the favorite to beat Haas again and clinch his sixth victory on grass against the German.
But Haas had other plans as he recovered from a set and a break down to beat Federer 2-6 7-6 (8) 6-4. After beating Federer, Haas lost to Mischa Zverev in the Stuttgart quarterfinal. Haas appeared in five more tournaments between June and August, picking up five first-round exits - in Halle, Wimbledon, Bastad, Hamburg and Kitzbuhel.
In 2018, Haas announced his retirement from pro tennis. In the end, Haas' stunning comeback win over Federer turned out to be his final pro win.
Haas saved a match point to beat Federer
Federer made a fast start to their Stuttgart match, breaking Haas in the first and seventh games to easily win the first set.
After easily winning the first set, Federer earned the first break of the second set in the third game to open a 2-1 lead. Down by a set and a break, Haas refused to quit as he broke back Federer in the fourth game. In the ninth game, Federer had a break point for a 5-4 point but Haas saved it and managed to force a tie-break.
In the tie-break, Haas missed out on three set points before Federer earned his first match point. However, Haas was able to maintain his focus as he saved the match point and then earned his fourth set point - which he realized to send the match into a decider.
After losing the second set, Federer had a chance to break Haas early in the third set but the German saved three break points in the fourth game to tie the set to two games apiece. Federer paid the price for not realizing his break point chances as Haas earned the first break of the third set in the fifth game to open a 3-2 lead.
In the sixth game, Federer had four break points to get the break back but Haas saved them all to go 4-2 up. Haas didn't allow Federer any break points in his next two service games as the German served out for the match in the 10th game.
In a recent interview, Haas paid tribute to Federer and his elegance. "You can talk about Roger's career for a long time. It's unbelievable what he achieved, how long and consistently. He played tennis as if he was from another planet, that was the time from 2004 to 2006," Haas told Eurosport Germany's tennis podcast Das Gelbe vom Ball.
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