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Roger Federer French Open 2021

Roger Federer ‘very happy and excited’ after grass court return

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Roger Federer admitted he had to calm his nerves to beat Ilya Ivashka in the first round of the ATP 500 event in Halle.

The 20-time major winner defeated the Belarusian qualifier 7-6 (7-4), 7-5 in his first grass court match since Wimbledon in 2019.

“[I] had a tough moment early on in the first set when he had break points, so that was crucial to get out of those,” Federer said in his on-court interview.

“And then I played a really good tiebreak, which I was happy about. I think as the match went on I started to create more opportunities and started to also calm my nerves a bit.

“Overall, I think I served very well. Clearly, I can always be a little bit better, but I’m very happy and excited that I was able to get through the first one.

“I missed it. I hadn’t played a tournament in two years on this surface. I’ve done the hard courts, I’ve done the clay and now [I am] on the grass.

“It’s been great being back here in Halle. I love playing here. I’m excited to be back on the green grass. And getting a win is obviously always very nice.”

The 39-year-old Swiss will face either Felix Auger-Aliassime or Hubert Hurkacz in the second round.


Roger Federer French Open 2021
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