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Federer calls for quicker courts

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Originally published on: 29/02/12 13:19

Roger Federer has an answer to those who call for more serve-and-volley players in tennis: make some of the courts quicker. The 30-year-old Swiss is delighted to be playing on a fast surface at this week’s Dubai Duty Free Championships, where he won his first match against Michael Llodra, but regrets the fact that most surfaces on the tour are much slower.
 
Asked whether he would like to see other tournaments install quicker surfaces, Federer said: “Not all of them, but some of them. I just think it’s good for the game. It allows a serve-and-volley player such as Llodra and other players to move forward.”
 
He added: “Maybe it would also make, let’s say, myself and [Andy] Murray and other players move forward too. If you know that it’s a surface you can play on more frequently, you get the habit and you [develop] more confidence moving forward. Ninety-five per cent of the time surfaces are rather slow. You get in the habit of playing so well off the baseline that you just feel it’s better to stay back than to come in.”
 
Unfortunately for the likes of the world No.3, most players are happy with the surfaces as they are. “I don’t think there are many players who want it much faster,” Federer said. “I guess us players have got what we want. We can have some influence with the tournament directors by just talking to them, but at the end of the day they are the decision-makers and not us.”
 
Federer has an apartment in Dubai and clearly enjoys the tournament, but, ever the diplomat, he refused to give it a ranking in terms of his favourite places. “It deserves a great status in the calendar, but as you might expect, I have many great destinations where I love playing,” he said. “In some ways every centre court, every place has something unique for me.”

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