Roger Federer: 'I grew up as a clay-courter, my movement on clay is natural'



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Roger Federer: 'I grew up as a clay-courter, my movement on clay is natural'

Roger Federer won the first Major title at Wimbledon 2003, becoming a contender for the ATP throne that summer. The Swiss had the opportunity to become world no. 1 in Montreal, Cincinnati and the US Open, wasting them all and having to wait until February next year and his second Major crown at the Australian Open to achieve that.

In the semi-final in Montreal, Roddick prevailed over Federer who then lost early in Cincinnati and New York to David Nalbandian, seeking another chance to become the world's leading player during the indoor season. Roger claimed the title in Vienna, standing as one of the favorites a week later in Madrid too, making a winning start following a 6-4, 6-3 triumph over Alex Corretja in 70 minutes.

Federer lost 11 points in ten service games, getting broken once. That happened in the worst moment while serving for the opener, recovering his game instantly to secure the set with another break.

The Swiss had the upper hand in set number two, sealing the deal and moving into the second round.

"I was happy to get off to a good start. I did well after getting broken, earning another return game to close the opener. The second set wasn't that hard too, and I was happy with my performance today. The court is quicker than in Vienna last week, and I'm not risking much in the opening rounds.

Mardy Fish and I played once at Wimbledon, I beat him in four sets. He has improved and he is a dangerous rival, performing well in Cincinnati. He has a big game and a massive serve, also taking chances on the return. I'm happy to be in contention for world no.

1 position. It's a pity I missed my opportunity in Montreal, Cincinnati and the US Open. For me, the important thing is to play a good, solid indoor season; the last year was good but I want an even better one now. I made a perfect start in Vienna and Madrid and Paris could be essential in that battle.

There are also Basel and the Masters Cup, and I will try to win them all. I'm relaxed and confident, ready to play for a couple of weeks in a row. I feel better than last year; the race to Shanghai was killing me in 2002.

I have more experience now and I'm a better player. I'm used to playing on both clay and indoor courts, like other European players. I grew up as a clay-courter; my movement feels natural on the slowest surface," said Roger Federer.