Federer closes on another record

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/A/Apfederer.jpg' class='caption'> Another record is in Roger Federer's sights. At the Pacific Life Open, the mark in peril is the 46-match winning streak put together by Guillermo Vilas.

Updated: March 22, 2007 06:37 IST
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Indian Wells, California:

Another record is in Roger Federer's sights. Next week at the Pacific Life Open, the mark in peril is the 46-match winning streak put together by Argentine left-hander Guillermo Vilas in 1977. Federer has won 41 in a row during a streak that dates to mid-August of 2006. The three-time defending tournament champion can reach 47 consecutive victories with another title at Indian Wells. The 25-year-old Swiss says the consecutive winning streak record "would be very nice," but insists that's not going to be his focus when he begins play in the tournament on Sunday. "Now I get asked if I'm motivated. It's so silly," Federer said. "The motivation is as high as ever and it's not going to go away any time soon, that's for sure. For me, it's the matches, the battle with your opponent on center court, the fans, the excitement. "I always like the knockout system in tennis. A bad day, you're out. A good day, you can be in. But there's never a guarantee," he said. Andy Murray, the last player to defeat Federer, said to beat him, "You have to believe you can win the match. A lot of players don't believe they can." Enviable record Federer has been No 1 on the ATP Tour for a record 162 consecutive weeks. He has won five of the past six Grand Slams and nine of them in four years. He is 12-0 this year and 259-15 since the start of the 2004 season and can reach 500 career match wins by reaching the Indian Wells final. And a title here would be his eighth in a row, tying a record shared by John McEnroe, Ivan Lendl and Bjorn Borg.

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