Roger Federer is closing in on another history-making achievement: becoming the oldest man ever to be ranked No. 1 in professional tennis.
In his first match since winning the Australian Open for the sixth time last month, the world’s No. 2-ranked player cruised to a 6-1, 6-2 win over Ruben Bemelmans of Belgium at the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament on Wednesday in Rotterdam, Netherlands.
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In winning his first-round match in a mere 47 minutes over Bemelmans (ranked No. 116), the Swiss star moved just two wins from surpassing longtime rival Rafael Nadal atop the ATP rankings at age 36. If the 20-time Grand Slam champion reaches the semifinals at the indoor tournament, he would surpass Andre Agassi (33 years, 133 days old) as the oldest man ever to be ranked No. 1.
Federer was on his game from the beginning and did not let up, giving up only four points on his serve in the first set while breaking his overmatched opponent four times.
“[It was] very surprising how good things went today,” Federer said. “I think the key was to start off well and put Ruben under pressure right away and make him feel like he had to do something special.”
The top-seeded Federer will play his second-round match against Germany’s Philipp Kohlschreiber, a player who has never beaten Federer in 12 career tries.
Source : cbc