Decline? I've heard it all before says Federer

Wed Aug 18, 2010 9:56am EDT
 
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By Simon Evans

MASON, Ohio (Reuters) - Roger Federer has heard the talk about his supposed decline before and the world number two finds it hard to take the suggestion seriously.

The record 16-times Grand Slam winner failed to get beyond the quarter-finals at the French Open and Wimbledon this year and with the last Grand Slam of the season, the U.S. Open, on the horizon, talk has turned to whether the Swiss is fading.

Federer, who lost to Andy Murray in last week's final in Toronto, appears to find the idea ridiculous.

"I had a wonderful summer last year with (winning) the French Open and Wimbledon, which wasn't case this year.

"But last year after the Australian Open when I lost against Nadal, people were also talking about how I was on a huge decline. I cried on center court at the Australian Open, which was a big tragedy for many people," he told reporters.

"Nobody ever believed I would come back. I won two slams and played the finals of the US Open and won the Australian Open, so then everything changes and you don't win the French or Wimbledon, and things are all bad again.

"So it moves very quickly. I know the rules and how it all works," he said.

Federer said that in the current era - with four outstanding players at the top of the rankings and others, such as Robin Soderling and Tomas Berdych closing in - people had better get used to keen competition.   Continued...

 
<p>Roger Federer of Switzerland reacts after losing to Andy Murray of Britain during their final match at the Rogers Cup tennis tournament in Toronto August 15, 2010. REUTERS/Mike Cassese</p>