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Federer extends his hot streak to clinch Rotterdam title

Dubai-bound Kvitova, Muguruza in fine fettle

Image Credit: Reuters
Roger Federer of Switzerland holds the trophy after winning the ABN AMRO World Tournament in Rotterdam.
Gulf News

Rotterdam: Roger Federer celebrated his return to the top of the world rankings with his second title of the season, swatting aside Grigor Dimitrov 6-2 6-2 in the final of the ABN AMRO World Tournament in Rotterdam yesterday.

Federer, 36, who became the oldest men’s world number one after his semi-final victory on Saturday, broke his Bulgarian opponent early in the contest and cruised to a one-set lead at the Ahoy Rotterdam.

Playing flawless tennis, the 20-times major winner carried the momentum forward in the second set to seal the match in 55 minutes for his 97th career title and third in Rotterdam.

The Swiss, who won the Australian Open last month, also improved his head-to-head record against world number five Dimitrov to 7-0.

In Doha, Petra Kvitova made a shaky start but found her attacking verve midway through the match to beat world No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki 3-6 7-6(3) 7-5 in the Qatar Open and set up a final with Spain’s Garbine Muguruza. The Dubai Tennis Championships is the next stop for both players.

Kvitova, 27, who lost the opening set tamely and looked in some trouble while trailing 3-1 in the second, fought back in style to clinch her fourth straight victory over the Dane in two hours and 35 minutes.

“I don’t know what happened. I was a little crazy in my mind and I was playing everywhere and not to the court,” twice Wimbledon champion Kvitova said in a courtside interview. I tried to calm myself down a little bit in the second set. Even though I was losing, I was trying to get back somehow.

“When I was down 3-1 I was really angry with myself and I tried to hit some winners,” added Kvitova, who made 59 unforced errors including 11 double faults, but also hit 50 winners.

Having dragged the second set into a tiebreaker which she edged, the battling Czech quickly switched gears and attacked her opponent relentlessly to prevail in the decider.