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Sunday, October 17, 2021

Qatar Open: After year-long layoff, Roger Federer returns with a win in Doha

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After higher than a yr out, Roger Federer started his twenty-fourth season on tour with a win.

It was faraway from simple for the earlier No. 1, though, as he was pushed exhausting by Dan Evans on the Qatar Open sooner than worthwhile the second-round match 7-6 (8), 3-6, 7-5 on Wednesday.

It was Federer’s first match in 405 days after having a knee surgical process following the 2020 Australian Open.

“Feels good to be back,” Federer talked about in an on-court interview. “I’m happy to be standing here regardless of if I won or lost. But obviously winning feels better.”

Playing for virtually 2 1/2 hours examined the 39-year-old Swiss participant’s stamina following his prolonged break.

Federer saved a set degree at 6-5 down throughout the first-set tiebreaker and saved two break elements at 3-3 throughout the deciding set sooner than sealing the win with a break of Evans’ serve.

He confirmed flashes of his conventional brilliance alongside one of the simplest ways, clinching the first set with a really perfect cross-court backhand winner as Evans charged into the online. Having didn’t convert a match degree at 5-4 throughout the decider, he used one different backhand down the street to clinch the win on his second attempt.

Federer talked about he used Evans as a training companion as he prepared for his comeback, collaborating in higher than 20 items in opposition to the Briton throughout the earlier weeks.

“It has been a long and tough road for me. I enjoyed it though,” the 20-time Grand Slam champion talked about.

“It has been a huge challenge of mine in my tennis career and to come back at my age is not something that is very simple.”

Federer will play Nikoloz Basilashvili throughout the quarterfinals after the Georgian beat Malek Jaziri 6-2, 6-2.

Top-seeded Dominic Thiem rallied to beat Australian Open semifinalist Aslan Karatsev 6-7 (5), 6-3, 6-2 for a spot throughout the quarters.

Thiem’s subsequent opponent is fifth-seeded Roberto Bautista Agut, who didn’t face a single break degree in his 6-4, 6-3 win in opposition to Alexander Bublik of Kazakhstan.

Third-seeded Andrey Rublev superior with out taking to the court docket docket after his opponent Richard Gasquet withdrew with leg hurt.

Denis Shapovalov acquired an all-Canadian match in opposition to Vasek Pospisil 7-5, 6-4. That unit up a quarterfinal in opposition to Taylor Fritz of the U.S., who upset sixth-seeded David Goffin 6-1, 5-7, 7-6 (9). Fritz saved a match degree at 6-5 down throughout the decider and twice further throughout the tiebreaker.

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