Federer Relishes Fast Conditions; Aims To Improve Paris Record
by James Buddell
Roger Federer has reached the BNP Paribas Masters quarter-finals on three occasions.
World No. 2 Roger Federer, who has reached the BNP Paribas Masters quarter-finals in 2002-03 and 2008, admitted on Tuesday he hopes to do better this year at the final ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournament of the season.
“This has been by far my worst [ATP World Tour] Masters 1000 tournament, so I hope I can do well this year,” said Federer, who lifted his 65th tour-level title at his home tournament, the Swiss Indoors Basel, on Sunday.
“I won't have much of a preparation. I'll hit an hour later on today, and that's about everything I'll get before my match tomorrow. [But] I'm happy that I'm feeling so well [and] I'm playing so well.”
Many players have commented this week about the fast court conditions at the Palais Omnisports in Paris-Bercy, but Federer isn’t fussed ahead of his first match against France’s Richard Gasquet.
“I think it's nice that some tournaments have made the courts faster again,” he said. “I'm not saying it should be the trend for all the tournaments, but indoors is supposed to be faster. We only have one indoor [ATP World Tour] Masters 1000, so I think it should be the fastest one.
“I just think it's good for the players, honestly, to experience again a faster court, and a bit of sort of two-shot tennis is fun for a change to do. It's tricky. It's not easy.”
Federer takes a 6-1 lead into his match against Gasquet on Wednesday. The pair has not met since June 2007 at Wimbledon.
“I believe he has the potential to become Top 10, there's no question about that,” admitted Federer. “But tennis has become more mental and physical than before. Maybe that's the reason why it's so difficult to become Top 10 overnight.
“I hope he won't start his way to the Top 10 tomorrow.”