Roger Federer: Easy Draw Will Help Superstar Overcome Distractions in Shanghai

Rob GoldbergFeatured ColumnistOctober 8, 2012

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 05:  Roger Federer of Switzerland returns a shot during his men's singles quarterfinal match against Tomas Berdych of Czech Republic on Day Ten of the 2012 US Open at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 5, 2012 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Roger Federer has had a bit of a stressful week.

A few days ago, an internet user posted a disturbing message on a site. It read "On October 6, I plan to assassinate Federer for the purpose of tennis extermination."

While the majority of threats, especially on the internet, are fake, it is always important to take things like this seriously.

This is why Federer is admitting that the threat is a distraction as he enters the Shanghai Rolex Masters. According to, he said:

Obviously maybe it's a little bit of a distraction, there's no doubt about it. But you have to be aware of what's happening around you. But that is the case anyway anywhere I go today with my fame and all that stuff.

The 31-year-old veteran is an experienced professional, but there are some things that you just cannot or should not get accustomed to in this world.

Fortunately, he gets to return to playing tennis this week. If there is one place Federer can feel comfortable, it is on the court, where he controls most of the action.

In the upcoming tournament, the No. 1 player in the world has the top seed and a first-round bye. He then has a few matches against weaker opponents to get acclimated with the court and make sure he feels good.

Federer cannot face a top-10 seed until the quarterfinals, where either Juan Monaco or Marin Cilic could be waiting. In fact, the only elite threat in the entire half of the bracket is Andy Murray, who would present a tough challenge in the semifinals if both reach that stage.

Conversely, the bottom half of the bracket contains Novak Djokovic, Tomas Berdych, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and Janko Tipsarevic. Each of these men have the talent to beat anyone in the world on a given day, but they will spend time beating each other before possibly facing the top player in the finals.

The Swiss player does not need any favors, but an easy stretch in the first couple of matches can do wonders for clearing his mind of the unfortunate distraction. If he is able to do that, he can leave with his seventh tournament win of the year as he keeps his top ranking in the world.


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