Following his defeat to Novak Djokovic in an epic semifinal clash at the Paris Masters on Saturday, world number three, Roger Federer has reflected on the loss and admitted he has regrets. Despite the regrets, the 37-year-old took positives from a great week in Paris.
After clinching the Swiss Indoors title in Basel last week, Federer came to the French capital with the hope of becoming only the second man after Jimmy Connors to rack up a century of career singles title, but he came up agonizingly short in a three-hour thriller, losing 6-7, 7-5, 6-7 to Djokovic.
“I think the level was good from my side,” said Federer, per atpworldtour.com. “Clearly I have some regrets. When you lose a close match like this you always have. Wherever they are in the match.
“But, overall, it was a good tournament. I can look back and think it was definitely worth it to come to Paris. The welcome was great. I played some good tennis, so I can be happy.”
The great Swiss was also full of praise for Novak Djokovic, who has now won 31 of his previous 32 matches and is set to play in his fourth consecutive final, which will be against Russia’s Karen Khachanov on Sunday. The Serb, 31, will look to secure a record-extending fifth Paris Masters crown and equal Rafael Nadal’s record tally of 33 ATP Masters 1000 titles.
“Novak is obviously on a roll. You can feel it,” said Federer. “He protects his serve very well. I think I did the same as well. And at the end it came down to a few things here and there.
“I’m happy with my game. It’s better than last week in Basel. There I won the tournament and here I played in the semis and it needed somebody of Novak’s calibre to beat me. So, that’s all right. I’m looking forward to a rest now and a good preparation for London.”
Roger Federer, a six-time champion at the Nitto ATP Tour Finals, is confident about going all the way in London and will seek to end his 7-year title drought there. However, the Swiss isn’t oblivious of the stiff challenges that the elite eight-man field will pose.
“Last week, I obtained the title [in Basel] and it gave me a lot of confidence. I saved a lot of break points. I wasn’t tense. I wasn’t nervous. So I got used to playing matches again,” said Federer. “We’re going to play against the Top 10 from the first [match in London]. It’s not simple. My body is in shape. Mentally I felt tough. So, it’s a good thing as well. And I reached the semi-finals [in Paris]. I can still be satisfied.”
The Nitro ATP Tour Finals is a season-ending event for the highest-ranked players on the ATP World Tour and will take place from 11 November to 18 November at the O2 Arena in London.