Sunday, June 7, 2009

Federer claims French Open title

2009 French Open - Day Fifteen

Roger Federer completed the career Grand Slam with victory over Robin Soderling at the French Open.

Federer won 6-1 7-6 (7/1) 6-4 to become only the sixth man in history to win all four Grand Slam tournaments.

He also equals Pete Sampras' all-time record of 14 Grand Slam singles titles and will now be regarded by many as the greatest player of all time.

French Open Men's Final in pictures

Victory over Soderling was rarely in doubt, the Swiss great racing through the first set and then fending off Soderling's attempts at a comeback in competitive second and third sets.

It was a fitting way for Federer achieve the feat - the 27-year-old producing a superb display to which we have become accustomed.

His serve was outstanding - he faced just two break points in the entire match and was never broken - the famous forehand rock solid, while his use of the drop shot - so often the one weakness in his game - baffled his Swedish opponent.

Federer got off to the best possible start, breaking serve in the very first game as he found top gear immediately.

Soderling looked a little nervous but Federer's level was so good he stood little chance in the early stages. He never allowed Soderling to dictate, as he had done so often during his dream run at Roland Garros, one which had seen him beat Federer's nemesis Rafael Nadal, the four-time defending champion.

The opening set was over in just 23 minutes, Soderling losing his serve three times.

The second set was much closer - a rare moment of concern coming when a spectator invaded the court and bizarrely dangled a flag over Federer - and no breaks of serve meant a tie-break was required to separate the players.

Had Soderling taken it, perhaps Federer would have stumbled. As it was, he was never given a hope.

Federer played a near-perfect tie-break, winning it 7-1, serving four aces from his four service points.

When Soderling dropped serve at the start of the third set the game looked up for the 23rd seed and although he forced break points in games four and 10 - as Federer served for the match - the Swiss stood firm.

Upon clinching victory when Soderling found the net, Federer sank to his knees in sheer delight and was soon overcome with emotion.

He got up to receive the trophy from Andre Agassi, the last man to win all four majors, his place in history assured.

No comments:

Post a Comment