Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : March 2nd 2014 Contents A47
March 2, 2014 www.guardian.co.tt Sunday Guardian
DUBAI---Roger Federer won a record
sixth Dubai Championships---and 78th
career title---by beating Tomas Berdych
3-6, 6-4, 6-3 in the final yesterday.
Federer, who maintains a home in
Dubai, delighted a packed stadium of
fans who seemed biased for the Swiss
in back-to-back wins over Novak
Djokovic in the semifinals and Berdych.
"Things definitely went my way out
here tonight," Federer said. "I ve had a
lot of tough matches in the last year
The victory was hard fought as Fed-
erer lost the first serve and his serve
in the second to trail 3-2.
Federer s win, his sixth here in the
last 12 years, extends his record of win-
ning at least one title a year to 14 con-
This is Federer s first tournament
victory since winning in Halle, his only
title of 2013, last spring.
Federer improved his record over
Berdych to 12-6 with the win. The last
time they played, however, Berdych
beat Federer in the Dubai semifinals
"He s the greatest player of all time
and he ll never give up and give you
anything for free," Berdych said. "I knew
that and thought I was ready for it, but
my execution wasn t good enough to
hold it to the end."
The loss ended Berdych s longest
winning streak of his career at 11 match-
es.In the first set, the fourth-seeded
Federer s forehand looked shaky and
he appeared a step slow.
After exchanging early service breaks,
the third-seeded Berdych snared the
go-ahead break in the sixth game. On
a second break point at 30-40, Federer
netted a backhand to lose serve.
In the second set, there was another
early exchange of breaks. From 4-4,
Federer won the final eight points of
the set to even the set score.
"Everything happens very, very
quickly and I was looking for better
serving because that s what let me down
the most in the beginning, getting bro-
ken three times in five, six service
games," Federer said.
Both players had break opportunities
in the first two games of the third set---
Berdych three and Federer one---but
each held. Federer secured his way to
victory when he broke Berdych on a
second break point in the fourth game.
The Swiss faced two break points on
his serve in the seventh game but held
on for 5-2.
Berdych was able to save two Federer
match points on his own serve in the
eighth game. But the Czech couldn t
stop Federer from serving out. On Fed-
erer s third match point at 40-15 in the
ninth game, Berdych netted a backhand
"The match started pretty well and
I had many chances," Berdych said.
"It s very disappointing for me the way
I handled that situation."
SAO PAULO---Top-seeded Tommy Haas retired
with a shoulder injury while losing 6-3, 3-2 to
Paolo Lorenzi of Italy in the Brazil Open semifinals
Haas said he "felt a lot of pain" in his right
shoulder when he slammed his racket to the ground
in frustration after losing his serve at 3-3 in the
first set. He kept playing despite needing medical
treatment several times, and finally gave up after
going down another break in the second set.
The 12th-ranked German said the pain was "get-
ting worse during the match" and it didn t allow
him to "compete the way" he wanted.
"After I threw my racket when I got broken at
three-all I felt a lot of pain in my shoulder and it
never really got away," he said. "The pain was
getting worse. And the smart player s decision has
to be not to continue, unfortunately."
Haas said he has been frustrated with shoulder
problems and admitted that it could play a factor
in his future decision on when to stop playing.
"I ve had three shoulder injuries and one elbow
injury, so my shoulder is not the youngest, not the
way it needs to be," Haas said. "I m very happy
that I can still play at a high level, but sometimes
the shoulder is very, very tired, very, very stiff, and
it tells me not to continue. But I ll try to play as
long as I can, hopefully for the rest of the season,
then we will see."
The 32-year-old Lorenzi, ranked 114th, will play
in his first ATP final against either Thomas Bellucci
of Brazil or Federico Delbonis of Argentina. Lorenzi
had previously never advanced past the quarter-
"When I started this tournament I never thought
that I would be playing in the final," Lorenzi said.
"Now tomorrow let s see what happens. Right now
I m just happy to be in this final here in Brazil."
Defending champion Rafael Nadal is not playing
at the clay-court tournament this year. He chose
to play at the first edition of the Rio Open, which
he won last week.
Haas retires with bad shoulder in Brazil semis
Roger Federer of Switzerland displays his trophy after beating Tomas Berdych of Czech Republic during the
final match of the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, yesterday.
6th Dubai title
Andre Agassi may not yet be ready to become
the latest "super coach" to hit the ATP Tour, but
admits it is a job he would one day like to do.
The current trend at the top of the men s game
is for former players to coach the leading stars of
Ivan Lendl has mentored Britain s Wimbledon
champion Andy Murray for two years, while Boris
Becker and Stefan Edberg were appointed by Novak
Djokovic and Roger Federer respectively ahead of the
Agassi was regarded as one of the most astute
players during a career that brought him eight Grand
Slam titles and admits the idea of following his con-
temporaries into coaching "sounds like a very sat-
The 43-year-old American is, however, not yet
prepared to make the commitment with a young
family, his charitable work and equipment line at the
peak of his priorities.
"Seeing the game through someone else s eyes and
trying to figure out how to make them better, all that
sounds like a very satisfying experience separate from
the commitment that is required from being away
from home," he said.
"When you see Ivan and his kids are older now
and grown---it is a different time in life for him.
"I don t know much about Boris and what focus
he has or responsibilities. It s hard to speak for his
reasons and motivations.
"I look at it from a distance and I love talking
about the game, I love sharing insight about the
"I feel like I could certainly contribute a lot because
I spent a lot of time learning and studying what the
game is and what people are and what they need.
"All that sounds very enjoyable to me except that
it is a full-time job. I just don t have room for that
in my life at this stage."
Not that the American, who won his first Grand
Slam at Wimbledon in 1992, is ready to shelve the
"Maybe. You can never say never," he said.
"I m building schools across the country in America
and I have my line of equipment that we have in
about 18 countries.
"I m trying to do that proud. I have multiple chal-
lenges that are taking my energies."
For now Agassi is content limit his tennis com-
mitments to exhibition matches---which he admits
he takes a bit too seriously---and he is set to take on
old rival Pete Sampras at Earls Court on Monday as
part of the World Tennis Day Showdown presented
by Financial Times.
I've had a lot of tough matches
in the last year and a half so it
was nice to get a lucky break
Agassi not ready to be 'super coach'
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