Federer set for Paris Masters
28 October 2008
PARIS – Roger Federer has confirmed he will compete in this week’s Paris Masters Series tournament, erasing doubts over his participation.
Federer won his hometown tournament in Basel for the third time in a row on Sunday and indicated afterward that he might revise his plans to save energy for the season-ending Masters finals in Shanghai next month.
But the director of the Paris tournament, Jean-Francois Caujolle, confirmed on Monday that the Swiss star would be present as he attempts to land his first Masters Series title of the season after two final losses.
Federer, who has lost his No 1 world ranking to Rafael Nadal, but who won the US Open in September, had indicated a few weeks ago that he could bring an early end to his season.
Instead the 27-year-old competed in the Madrid Masters where he lost in the semi-finals before playing in Basel and defeating Argentine David Nalbandian to take his season record to 63-13.
Federer’s season highlight was his 13th career Grand Slam title at the US Open and if he were now to notch a 58th career success in Paris he would move ahead of Ilie Nastase and stand just two trophies behind Andre Agassi.
As well as his US Open and Basel wins, he furthermore landed silverware at Estoril and Halle but was knocked off top spot in the world rankings by French Open, Wimbledon and Olympic champion Rafael Nadal in August after a record 237 weeks top of the pile.
Handed a bye here for the opening round, the Swiss will face either Sweden’s Robin Soderling – fresh from winning in Lyon – or French wildcard Josselin Ouanna when he makes his entrance in round two.
Three places are still up for grabs for Shanghai and this week’s Paris tournament will see those final places filled.
Nadal, Federer, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray and Nikolai Davydenko have already qualified.
[AFP / Expatica]