Roger Federer’s 16-match winning ended last night to the hands of American former No. 1 Andy Roddick. In an electric night match at the Sony Ericsson Open, Roddick rallied to beat his rival 7-6, 1-6, 6-4.
Federer, who had won his last three tournaments, was seeking a rare Indian Well-Miami double. It was also only Roger’s third loss since the US Open and his earliest exit at a tournament since last summer.
His post-match presser:
Q. Do you feel like you play bad service games today?
ROGER FEDERER: Bad service games?
ROGER FEDERER: Um, maybe one.
Q. The crucial one.
ROGER FEDERER: Well, in hindsight, yes.
Q. Do you think that maybe you played, um, in terms of, um, having um taking advantage of the break points that you had? You broke three times in the second set, but early on in the third you had four chances to break and you failed to do that.
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, I mean, you said it. I had my chances. I thought Andy did well to get the first, and then to put me in the situation I guess in the third. You know, could have been up a break early in the third, but he did well also to fight off those break points. Served really well.
I think he had a good overhead. You know, he played aggressive and clutch served when he had to. It was his credit. For me, it was obviously a tough loss. The one service game where I got broken he really goes for it and it all works out.
So credit to him to hang in there and give himself that chance in the beginning of the third.
Q. You’ve played him more than anybody. Can you talk about how his game tonight was different? Looked more like the Andy Roddick of ten years ago instead of the last five in terms of how aggressive he was off the ground.
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, he was aggressive in one particular game. That stands out obviously because it also paid off. But, you know, he’s still very good. I hope you guys give him more credit than he’s getting at the moment.
I’m happy to see him play really well, you know. He’s a great champion, and, yeah, enjoy him while you have him. It was a great night for him and America’s tennis, I guess.
For me it was tough, but I thought he had some very good moments, Andy had some really good moments, and it was a close match. It was just, didn’t go my way today.
ROGER FEDERER: Seven games in a row?
Q. He won seven games in a row.
ROGER FEDERER: No, I mean, Love 40 I had my chances. I don’t think I saw a second serve. Maybe I did. I’m not sure.
He did well, but obviously at that point I felt I was being the better man. I had my regrets in the first set. I didn’t come out with a lot of energy. I was pretty flat today. I just felt tired, I guess.
I have been playing so much. It was more mental than physical thing. I tried to push myself and gave myself a fighting chance, and then when things were under control, sort of you know, he fought off those break point chances and had the perfect game after that.
So it was a big turn of events there in five minutes, and that’s how tennis goes sometimes. But like I said, give Andy a lot of credit to put me in that situation at 1 All, I guess, in the third set, because it could have been very different out there tonight.
Q. Can you talk about the speed of the court and how that affected your game maybe?
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah, regular hard court. Pretty slow conditions. You know, you saw where Andy was returning, so, yeah, I mean, overall it’s a slow hard court, I guess.
Q. How do you feel like the Penn balls played in these conditions for you tonight?
ROGER FEDERER: Um, same as last week. We played the same ball over there; played some night session matches.
Q. As for the fatigue, would you give it an origin or source?
ROGER FEDERER: Yeah. Maybe 30 matches for the season. Just feeling like it’s taken its toll a bit, which is normal.
But I’ve played more tired in the past, so this was not the most tired I have ever been, but you just start to feel it a bit. I didn’t just get the lucky break today that I got in Indian Wells.
And, yeah, I mean, I regret missing those opportunities and giving myself maybe a chance for tomorrow. Then you never know how things all of a sudden turn out in the tournament.
Yeah, it is what it is tonight, and I’ll deal with it the way I always have.
Q. Do you think the result from the exhibition match at The Garden can ever play into the next match on tour? Can an exhibition ever be a predictor of anything like that?
ROGER FEDERER: No. For me, it has nothing to do with one another.
Q. You have won the last 77 games against players out of the top 10. Top 20, I’m sorry, not top 10. Losing against Andy, does that feel like you are losing against not a top player?
ROGER FEDERER: No. I feel like I lost against a former No. 1. That’s how it felt, not that I lost against a guy ranked 30 in the world. That ranking is not real, so it was a tough second round. I knew that in the start, and particularly here in Miami where I lost against him in the past. So I was aware of that, and I didn’t underestimate Andy at all.
But that streak, I mean, it was a nice one to have, but not more than that.
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