Tennis-Federer equals another record with first-round win

Reuters

Mon, 28 May 16:30:00 2012

* Federer snatches 233rd grand slam match win

* Matches Jimmy Connors's mark

* Beats Kamke in straight sets (Adds quotes, details)

Roger Federer added yet another record to his long list of achievements when he netted his 233rd grand slam victory with a 6-2 7-5 6-3 win against German Tobias Kamke in the first round of the French Open on Monday.

The third-seeded Swiss matched Jimmy Connors's professional era (since 1968) mark despite hitting some wayward shots against the world number 78 on Court Suzanne Lenglen.

"That (record) is a big one, because (it means) longevity. I have been so successful for such a long time and to already tie that record, (at) 30 years old is pretty incredible, so I'm very happy," Federer told a news conference.

"And it's been around for -- Jimmy is obviously one of the greats of all time, and was around for 20 years."

Federer, looking to secure a record 17th grand slam title at Roland Garros, cantered through the first set and broke decisively in the 11th game of the second, wrapping it up with a forehand winner in less than two hours.

Next up for the former world number one is Adrian Ungur after the Romanian beat Argentine David Nalbandian in four sets.

It was, however, a far from perfect performance for Federer, who hit 47 unforced errors and wobbled on his serve.

"They're never easy, those first rounds. Last thing you want is to go down a set or getting in a tough situation, but I was able to stay ahead in the first set, had bits of ups and downs on my serve," Federer explained.

"But overall I'm happy I'm through. That's what I look at in the end. Sometimes you have to come through when you're not playing your very best.

"I missed a few too many shots but I was always in the lead and could afford to do those."

Kamke certainly did not get intimidated by his opponent and foxed Federer at times with some bold shots.

"I was hitting particularly a lot with my forehand today," said Federer.

"He was going there often, which is unusual because usually players go into my backhand. It was a bit unusual."

Looking ahead, Federer said there was one record he would particularly cherish.

"The absolute title, that's Connors. 109 (titles), I'm at 74 now," he said.

"Is it possible for me to equal Connors' title? 110, that would be a round figure. That would be incredible. But that's a dream. I go year after year and we'll see."

 

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