Federer: "I Like This Part Of The Season"

Swiss star hoping for strong finish to 2018

Defending champion and two-time titlist Roger Federer, who returns to competition this week at the Rolex Shanghai Masters, says that he is looking forward to the final weeks of the 2018 ATP World Tour season. The Swiss superstar has won 24 of his 98 career crowns on indoor courts.

“I like this part of the season,” said Federer. “It's always been a good [swing] for me. Maybe [the] conditions get faster, I'm not sure… It's helpful I have a home tournament [the Swiss Indoors Basel, on the surface] and the [Nitto] ATP Finals. I have been very successful, so clearly I hope for something similar again this year.”

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The 37-year-old Federer, who lost to Australia’s John Millman on 4 September in the US Open fourth round, has already qualified for the Nitto ATP Finals for a record 16th time. He will join Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Juan Martin del Potro, who have also booked their places at The O2 in London from 11-18 November.

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“[I] have also had some rest after the US Open,” said Federer. “I feel like I'm where I want to be… There is still, obviously, some goals left for the season.”

Reflecting on 2017, he added, “Last year was a fairy-tale from start to finish, basically. It was just a small disappointment at the end, at the [Nitto] ATP Finals, not maybe giving myself the chance to be in the final, losing to Goffin. I was a bit disappointed with my play there. That was probably the first time in the whole season that I felt that way. But he (Goffin) also came out and played a great match.

“This year, for me again, honestly, it's been a great season: winning the Australian Open, getting back to World No. 1 in Rotterdam [the ABN Amro World Tennis Tournament], playing a good final in Indian Wells [the BNP Paribas Open] and playing a decent grass court season… I didn't play great in Cincinnati [the Western & Southern Open], but made the final there.

“I'm just really happy. I'm healthy. I have won another [Grand] Slam again this year. I always say when you win a Slam in any season, it's actually a very good season already. So, I feel like there is still a lot more to play for.”

Federer, who has a 36-6 match record in 2018, opens his campaign for a third Shanghai crown (2014, 2017) against Russia’s Daniil Medvedev, who captured last week’s Rakuten Japan Open Tennis Championships 2018 trophy (d. Nishikori) in the second round.

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