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Federer back with a bang

BASEL, Nov 3 – Roger Federer eased through to the second round of the Swiss Indoors here on Monday on his return after a six week break with a 6-3, 6-4 victory over Belgian qualifier Olivier Rochus.FEDERERThe world number one – bidding for a fourth successive Swiss Indoors title – shook off the rust from a six-week break to roar through and a date with Italian Andreas Seppi in just 66 minutes.

Federer’s march to victory was preceded by an operatic performance with massed choir and selections from Aida as his hometown honoured three straight titles at the St Jakobshalle by the world-famed native son.

"I felt so good out there," said the winner, who needed three match points to go through after earning the first two winning chances with his 11th and 12th aces of a quick evening.

"This was my longest pause, even longer than in the close season. But I really needed it and it was worth it," said the winner of a first French Open title and sixth Wimbledon title this season.

"It’s so great to be playing in Switzerland. I haven’t done it for a year and I really missed it.

"I felt I played a good match and just want to carry on like this."

Federer improved to an overwhelming 6-0 over Rochus, who lost to Marcos Baghdatis in the Stockholm final just over a week ago.

The Swiss top seed broke in the sixth game of the 29-minute first set, then fired his fifth ace for a 5-2 lead before securing the opening lead.

In the second, Federer went ahead 3-2 and was untroubled save his minor niggles in closing out the straightforward victory.

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Federer admits that Basel is the event closest to his heart after getting his start here as a ballboy a decade and a half ago.

The top seed has not played since helping his nation retain their place in the Davis Cup World Group with a win over Italy in September – Federer chose to rest rather than play the autumn tournaments in Asia.

The 15-time grand slam champion has laid low and got to know his three-month old twin girls as he assumed his additional new role as a father. He was unable to help himself as he bragged about his daft hand with a dirty nappy.

"I have an unbelievable technique," he said to laughter – mainly from his wife sitting in the stands.

Federer has not lost in Basel since the second round in 2003 when he was beaten by Croatian Ivan Ljubicic.

The Swiss who plans to go flat-out through this week, the Paris Masters starting next Monday and the year-end eight-man World Tour Finals in London, brings a 55-8 record this season to the court, with titles in Paris and Wimbledon as well as the Madrid and Cincinnati Masters events.

Fellow Swiss Stephane Bohli failed to give the home crowd a winning start on the day, with the number 148 journeyman losing 4-6, 6-1, 7-5 in the first-round to Italy’s Seppi.

Bohli, now 0-4 at the ATP level this season, sprang a surprise on Seppi by winning the first set before the 51st-ranked Italian pulled his game together.

In the day’s opening contest, Frenchman Florent Serra survived 28 aces off the racket of serve machine Ivo Karlovic but still subdued the Croatian 7-6 (7/5), 6-4.

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  1. Krop

    April 24, 2013 at 9:27 am

    So how is that relevant to Koffi Annan? Generation of employment to our young people is a Kenyan affair which must be tackled by the Government. I am surprised you dont know that!!!!

  2. Mwazz Jeff

    April 24, 2013 at 9:55 am


  3. Muhando Gedi

    April 24, 2013 at 11:44 am

    Surely,why would you need Koffi in this?Are not Kenyans loud enough for the world?Stop belittling the government of Muigai.It should be known to sundry and all that we have turned the page and in the move.Kindly please,STOP reminding us of Koffi.

  4. Nelson Ocs Osiemo

    April 24, 2013 at 2:08 pm

    Rubbish piece of writing. Who are you to lecture Annan. You must be holding someone’s brief in this piece, or are you lobbying for some appointment with the new ‘government’?

    • Duncan Muchina

      May 7, 2013 at 10:19 pm

      He has every right on earth to lecture that Ghanaian who came in our house in the name of peace but took sides. It’s great to let Kofi know that the house is in order without his preferred method of solution. In short, he is simply telling Kofi to go hang in the nearest tree, be it in Kumasi or wherever it is, he is from! Love it!!!!!

  5. Dr Gina

    April 25, 2013 at 8:28 pm

    So in your eyes everything is fine? Theft is theft , kofikitiabi Annan or kwame kuru a, with is mistaken belief that because one is so hurt that they are quiet means peace is so mistaken that only God will save Kenya when I burst ! Bu theqn again you don’t care do you? Yes cabinet secs. Funny Choose weaklings like Kandie and move on! Pyle me!

    • KingMenes

      April 27, 2013 at 6:30 am

      Dont be bitter for your loss.Your preferred candidate LOST in a free and fair election.Dont be a sore loser.”Theft is theft”,theft of who?We know there will be no theft ONLY when Raila wins,right?

  6. Peter Kimani

    April 29, 2013 at 11:53 pm

    At times, I felt that Kofi Annan was interfering too much with Kenya’s. Despite that, the language in this opinion isn’t warranted. Humility is a good virtue. We may need Annan in future.

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