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Federer Defeats Gonzalez Yet Again
Chilean Player Loses 9th match against world's No. 1
Marcelo Mackinnon (pelarco)     Email Article  Print Article 
Published 2006-10-30 12:15 (KST)   
The last time Fernando Gonzalez had played Roger Federer was on Oct. 22 during the final of the Madrid ATP Tournament, and on that occasion the Swiss player won by 7-5, 6-1,and 6-0.

On Oct. 29, the two met again, but this time it was in Federer's hometown of Basel, Switzerland. Federer had a lot to prove in this final, since for some strange reason he had never been able to win this ATP tournament, losing both previous tries in 2000 and 2001.

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The Swiss player, whom many experts are already considering as the best player of all time, arrived at the indoor tennis court with an impressive match record of 86 wins and only 5 defeats during the 2006 season, and a total of 8045 ATP points. On the hard surface in Basel, Federer got off to a strong start, as he slammed two aces past Gonzalez. The serve must be one of Federer's strongest weapons, since he hits the ball at an average of 190-200 km/hr.

Gonzalez seemed to be playing against a brick wall, as the Swiss player returned nearly every shot made by the Chilean, who went down in the first two sets by 6-3 and 6-2. However, even with the support that Federer was getting from his home crowd, Gonzalez managed to fight back and broke Federer's serve for the first time in the third set, to leave the score at 3-2.

Then came a controversial period when Gonzalez became distracted as he began to argue with the umpire over several serves that the Chilean player thought had gone in but had been called out. Finally Federer recovered, and the third set ended in a tiebreak that the Swiss "tennis machine" won by 7-3. The crowd in Basel cheered in delight, and Federer sighed in relief as he must have thought that the match was not going his way in the third set.

Fernando Gonzalez has a had a great year, specially in the past months, as he has qualified for three consecutive ATP finals in a row: in Vienna, where he lost to the world's third-ranked player, Ivan Ljubicic of Croatia; Madrid, and Basel, where he was twice defeated by Roger Federer, who now has a career total of 478 wins in 603 matches, a 79 percent victory rate. At the time this article was written, Gonzalez was ranked 9th by the INDESIT ATP 2006 race, eight points behind Tommy Robredo and nine points behind James Blake. He may still qualify for the most important tournament of the year, the Shanghai Masters Cup, where the world's eight best players face each other Nov. 12-19.
will appear in my blog samreality.blogspot.com
©2006 OhmyNews
Other articles by reporter Marcelo Mackinnon

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