Roger Federer delivered his first Miami Masters victory in 2000. An 18-year-old defeated Justin Gimelstob 7-5, 6-3 in 73 minutes for a place in the second round and a milestone victory. In December 1998, Roger claimed the Orange Bowl crown at Crandon Park in Miami and returned there a couple of months later to compete at the Masters 1000 event.
The 17-year-old lost to Kenneth Carlsen in two tight sets in the first round, waiting until 2000 to clinch the first triumph at the Miami Open. It came against Gimelstob in straight sets, celebrating his first Miami Open triumph and the fifth at the Masters 1000 level.
Defending his second serve superbly, Roger fended off two break chances. He shifted the pressure to the other side and produced one break in each set to find himself over the top.
Roger Federer's first Miami Open victory came vs.
Justin Gimelstob in 2000.
Both players had more winners than unforced errors, with the Swiss hitting over 20 direct points and under ten unforced mistakes. The young gun forced over 30 Gimelstob's errors and dominated the shortest range up to four strokes to forge the triumph.
Roger made a reliable start and held from 30-0 down in the first game. He fended off a break chance in the third game with a forehand winner and brought it home after Gimelstob's volley error. Federer fired a service winner at 2-2 to remain in front.
Nothing could separate them in the remaining games to reach 5-5 in swift 30 minutes after a rock-solid performance behind the initial shot. Roger closed the 11th game with back-to-back forehand winners and found the range on the return in the next one.
He landed a forehand winner to earn a break at 6-5 and close the opening set in 40 minutes. Gimelstob avoided a complete downfall after fending off break chances in the second set's second game. The American missed an opportunity on Roger's serve in the next one following an ace from the Swiss.
Federer seized a break a few minutes later to open a 7-5, 3-1 gap after Gimelstob's forehand error and held at 15 with an ace in game five to confirm the advantage. Roger delivered another powerful hold at 4-2 and sealed the deal in game nine following Gimelstob's backhand error to record a milestone victory at 18.
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