Federer ends year on top

Updated: 30 October 2007 18:22 IST

Roger Federer beat Jarkko Nieminen 6-3, 6-4 on Sunday to win his second straight Swiss Indoors and clinch the No 1 ranking for the fourth consecutive year.

Federer ends year on top

Basel:

Roger Federer beat Jarkko Nieminen 6-3, 6-4 on Sunday to win his second straight Swiss Indoors and clinch the No 1 ranking for the fourth consecutive year.

Federer joins Pete Sampras, Jimmy Connors, John McEnroe and Ivan Lendl as the only men's players to end the season ranked No 1 four or more times since the inception of the ATP rankings in 1973.

Federer, who had failed to win his home tournament six straight times before winning last year, has now captured a tour-high seventh title of the season.

"It's always emotional at the end," Federer said. "I remember being here as a ball boy myself. I know 50 percent of the people working at the tournament.

"It's nice to win again and go into the next year as No. 1 again," said Federer, who won three Grand Slam titles this year and has 12 overall, two fewer than the record 14 won by Sampras.

Federer broke on a forehand error by Nieminen to lead 2-0, and he closed out the first set with a volley in 27 minutes.

Nieminen, playing his first final of the year, missed a break point to lead the second set 2-0. He won two straight service games to love and had Federer under pressure in the eighth game.

But Nieminen served a double-fault in the next game to face a break point, and then put a forehand wide to give Federer a decisive 5-4 lead. When Nieminen's return went long, Federer held a match point and closed it out with a backhand volley winner.

After losing the Madrid Masters final to David Nalbandian last week, Federer dropped a set in his opening match in Basel before winning the next four in straight sets. He is now 7-4 in finals this year and has 52 career titles.

"I had a great week," said Nieminen, who was the first Finn to win an ATP title in 2006 in Auckland. "I was trying too much at the start of the match, I tried to hit too many winners. I started to play better in the second but it wasn't good enough. I had too many unforced errors. Roger is tough when it gets tight."

Nieminen fell to 0-8 against Federer.



Topics : Tennis Andy Roddick Lukas Dlouhy Rohan Bopanna Leander Paes Aisam-Ul-Haq Qureshi Maria Sharapova
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