Dubai, United Arab Emirates (Sports Network) - After dropping the first set
in stunning fashion, reigning champion and five-time titlist Roger Federer
roared back to win his opening-round match at the $1.785 Dubai Tennis
The second-seeded Swiss icon lost the first set to Tunisian wild card Malek
Jaziri before rebounding for a 5-7, 6-0, 6-2 victory on the hardcourts at
Dubai Tennis Stadium, where former women's Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova
captured a WTA title last week.
"It important to sort of react and make sure I didn't panic," said Federer.
"But, of course your mind starts to wander, especially in a match where there
is hardly any rallies. He's going for broke on every return. All you're trying
to do is get into some rallies, and you're missing a lot yourself.
"It was a difficult match for me out here tonight, but I'm happy I found a way
and got a day off now so I can work a little bit on the game. Just maybe the
pressure is off a little bit, and then automatically I will play a lot better
in the second round."
The Wimbledon champion Federer, a seven-time Dubai finalist, beat U.S. Open
champ Andy Murray in last year's marquee Dubai finale.
In other action involving seeds, No. 7 Andreas Seppi of Italy topped France's
Paul-Henri Mathieu 6-3, 7-5 and No. 8 Mikhail Youzhny of Russia overcame
Slovenian Blaz Kavcic 1-6, 6-1, 6-3. Youzhny was a Dubai finalist in 2007 and
Additional Day-1 wins came for Indian qualifier Somdev Devvarman, German
qualifier Daniel Brands, Spaniard Roberto Bautista Agut, and Czech Lukas
The first round will conclude on Tuesday, including matches for world No. 1
star Novak Djokovic, third-seeded Tomas Berdych, fourth seed Juan Martin del
Potro, and last week's Marseille titlist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who upended
Berdych in a three-set final thriller in France.
The Australian Open champion Djokovic is a three-time Dubai winner (2009-11).
The Sports Network