Fourteen years! That’s how long it’s been since Roger Federer failed to make it past the third round of the Australian Open. Sadly, Federer’s bid to win a record 18th Grand Slam singles title ended Friday with a tough four-set loss to Andreas Seppi.
Federer had escaped an upset in the second round when he overcame a first set loss, and a mystery injury to his right little finger, in a win over Simone Bolelli. But coming back from two sets down to Seppi proved to be too much for the ATP No. 2 player as he succumbed in four sets.
“Just a bad day,” Federer said, summing up his performance in his post-match press conference. “I wish I could have played better, but clearly it was tough losing the first two (sets). I knew how important that second set tie-breaker was. So clearly that hurt, losing that one.”
Tennis Express is bummed to see one of the sport’s most popular and consistent players lose this early at a major tournament. But with his dominant winning record on the tour, we have no doubt that he’ll bounce back from this loss pretty quickly. What else would you expect from a player who holds the record 17 Grand Slam men’s singles titles, and is one of just six men who have won all four Grand Slam tournaments? With an Olympic Gold and Silver medal, as well as the coveted Davis Cup title, which he won last November, it’s pretty likely that Federer’s days of hoisting trophies are not yet behind him. Federer’s next scheduled to compete at the Dubai Duty Free Championships, which begins Feb. 23.