The Swiss Maestro was firing on all cylinders tonight as his magical brand of tennis was on full display for the New York City crowd in Arthur Ashe Stadium. Federer fired off 44 winners en route to a 6-2, 6-3, 6-2 victory in a match between two 30-something year-olds.
The five-time US Open champion put on quite a show Thursday night—vicious forehands, well-placed volleys and trademark slices. He even tried to recreate some 2009 magic—albeit this time he was unsuccessful.
Up next for the No. 1 seed will be the left-handed Spaniard (Not Nadal) Fernando Verdasco. Verdasco has had a season full of ups and downs—but mostly downs. His most notable success this year will be his victory over compatriot Rafael Nadal on the strange blue clay of Madrid. The No. 25 seed has a game capable of troubling many players, but he hasn’t had any success in his previous four matchups with Federer. In fact, he has only won one set in their playing history.
Federer has been rolling through his opponents so far in this year’s Open and has been in fine form over the last 12 months—a spell that saw him reclaim his Wimbledon crown and ascend back to the top of the ATP World Tour rankings.
The 31 year-old Swiss has come heartbreakingly close to lifting a sixth US Open title in the last few years, and he will be keen to avenge his recent misfortunes at Flushing Meadows.
Through the first two rounds, does Roger Federer look like the man to beat?