Tennis legend Roger Federer did not have a return to the sport that he would have hoped. He crashed out in his opening round of the Geneva Open in Italy. The 20-time Grand Slam winner bowed out after losing 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 to Pablo Andujar, who is considered to be somewhat of a clay court specialist like his fellow countryman Rafael Nadal. The Swiss might have hoped to get a good run of games ahead of the French Open, Wimbledon, and Tokyo Olympics, but it was not to be. It was Federer’s first competitive match in two months. He had recently undergone two knee surgeries and it was clear that the 39-year-old was not at his best just yet.
Andujar, on the other hand, played to his strengths to outsmart his opponent and earned a well-deserved victory. In the third set, the Swiss had forced a service break and was leading 4-2. It seemed like a comfortable Federer victory at that point. However, that is when the Spaniard found his mojo and started to rally. The Swiss managed to rescue two break points on his serve but the third ended with a rather erratic forehand on the baseline under pressure.
Andujar had a fantastic game in his own right. Before the match, he said that it was an honor to face the great Roger Federer and it was a story he would tell his grandchildren about. The 35-year-old beat Jordan Thompson in the previous round to set up the date with the Swiss.
The Spaniard converted six aces while Federer managed three. He might have had a slightly lower win percentage than Federer in the first serve but it still in the 70s. The 35-year-old did manage to have a higher win percentage in the second serve than the Swiss. He won 16 games and 84 points in total, and also won more service games than the 39-year-old.
The loss against Andujar might come as a big blow to the Swiss, but it is important to note that Federer has not been playing as much tennis as the others. This was his first game in two months and he only recently had two surgeries in his right knee. However, the Swiss will look to get his game back to the high standards that he has set for himself over the years ahead of the French Open and Wimbledon.