Federer wins at Hamburg

Associated Press

Hamburg, May 16:

Roger Federer confirmed his status as No 1 in the world by beating the top court-clay player of the last year to win the Hamburg Masters for the second time since 2002 and end Guillermo Coria’s 31-match winning streak. Federer beat the second-seeded defending champion 4-6, 6-4, 6-2, 6-3 and handed Coria his first defeat on clay in nearly a year. Coria had been unbeaten on clay since the semifinals of last year’s French Open. The two traded breaks of serve early in the second and the set was even until the 10th game. Federer stepped up pressure on Coria’s serve and converted the first of his three set points with a volley.

He then won the first three games of the third, as his play became more consistent and his effective serve gained in accuracy. Down 5-2, Coria committed a double-fault to make it 30-30. Federer immediately stepped up the pressure with his best weapon, a powerful forehand, and gained a set point. He won it after forcing Coria into a backhand error. Federer held serve at the start of the fourth and Coria then received treatment for a blister on a finger on his playing, right hand. When he returned, Coria handed Federer a break point by putting a forehand into the net. He then played a week drop shot that bounced high in midcourt, giving Federer all the time to put away a forehand winner and go up 2-0. This was all Federer needed and ended the set with two consecutive service winners.