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2004 US Open: d. Lleyton Hewitt 6-0, 7-6, 6-0
2005 Wimbledon: d. Andy Roddick 6-2, 7-6, 6-4
2005 US Open: d. Andre Agassi 6-3, 2-6, 7-6, 6-1
2006 Wimbledon: d. Rafael Nadal 6-0, 7-6, 6-7, 6-3
2006 US Open: d. Andy Roddick 6-2, 4-6, 7-5, 6-1
2008 US Open: d. Andy Murray 6-2, 7-5, 6-2
2009 Roland Garros: d. Robin Soderling 6-1, 7-6, 6-4
In the very early stages of his reign at No. 1, Federer tended to rely on this more complete game to allow him to eventually pull away from his opponents.
That all changed at the 2004 US Open, when he put the pieces together early, running up the score early against Hewitt and cranking winners from all over the court. This is a scenario that has duplicated itself many times since then as Federer has grown more and more used to the finals experience.
Even in these cases, though, his opponents have typically been allowed to hope, as Federer's level drops somewhat in the second set. Only Agassi, Nadal, and Roddick were actually able to win a set from him at this stage and make a match of it, though.
The opponents on this list, by the way, tend to be those Federer is most familiar with. In the cases of Hewitt, Roddick, Agassi, and Soderling, he had played and defeated them in numerous matches leading up to that point.
In the case of the 2006 Wimbledon final, he was a far more experienced grass court player than Nadal. At last year's Open, he was far more experienced in major finals than Murray.
In all cases, though, he seemingly went into the match with an even greater chunk of confidence than usual.