Federer makes "perfect" start to steamy Open

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Roger Federer sent a warning shot to anyone trying to deny him a 17th Grand Slam title when the Swiss master said on Thursday he is feeling well rested at a sun-baked U.S. Open and has all the answers he needs.

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Federer said his bid for a sixth U.S. Open title is off to an ideal start after dismissing opponents with relative ease in a pair of straight sets victories that allowed him to preserve precious energy for the later rounds.

“It’s the perfect start,” Federer told reporters after his straightforward 6-3 6-4 6-3 thumping of German left-hander Andreas Beck on Thursday in a second-round match that lasted just 101 minutes.

“I played Monday, had two days off. I had another easy one physically today, and here I am in the third round feeling like I’m completely in the tournament.”

The 104th-ranked Beck made it easy on Federer by committing 11 double faults and 36 unforced errors before he surrendered meekly in the last game when Federer broke him at love thanks to four successive groundstroke errors.

Temperatures at Flushing Meadows have been brutally hot this week, but Federer’s on-court mastery and favorable draw has allowed him to escape the energy-sapping conditions much quicker than some of his potential later-round opponents.

“I got the sense of the crowd and the wind now as well. I played one night, one day. I have all the answers after two matches,” said the number two seed.

“Obviously they weren’t the most difficult matches. I didn’t have to save multiple breakpoints or whatever. I feel really good. Tougher matches will only be coming up now, I guess. I underestimate nobody.”

Federer’s third-round opponent will be Paul-Henri Mathieu, who advanced past his fellow-Frenchman Guillaume Rufin.

“Now it’s about saving your energy for the really big matches coming up,” said Federer.

Editing by Frank Pingue