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Roger Federer Wins US Open for 5th Straight Time

 

Roger Federer did what he does best....win the US Open.  Andy Murray was no match on the day as Federer won 6-2, 7-5, 6-2.  With the victory Federer moves to within one Grand Slam title of tying Pete Sampras' record of 14 titles.  "I felt like I was invincible for a while again," said Federer, the only man in tennis history to win five straight titles at two major events.

The 6th seed Murray upset Nadal in the semifinals to reach his first Grand Slam final and entered Monday with a 2-1 record against Federer. But Murray never really had a chance.

"I came up against, in my opinion, the best player ever to play the game," said Murray, who tried to give Britain its first men's major champion in 72 years. "He definitely set the record straight today."

At 21, here's how young Murray is: Back when Federer was winning his first US Open title in 2004, Murray was taking the US Open junior trophy.  Federer, coincidentally, was also 21 when he played his first Grand Slam final at Wimbledon in 2003. Except Federer beat Mark Philippoussis that day and continues to win major championship matches against everyone except a certain Spaniard: Federer is 2-4 against Nadal in Grand Slam finals, 11-0 against anyone else.

Against Murray, he accumulated a 36-16 advantage in winners and won the point on 31 of 44 trips to the net. His volleying might have been helped by his work winning a gold medal in doubles at the Beijing Olympics, a result he also credited with boosting his confidence. Murray, whose ranking rises to #4, stood about 10 feet behind the baseline to return serves, exactly the way he did against Nadal in their two-day, rain-interrupted semifinal. And Murray displayed flashes of the get-to-every-ball defense he used against Nadal, including one pretty flick of a lob by Federer with his back to the net. But Federer, who had an extra day to rest because his semifinal wasn't affected by Tropical Storm Hanna, was simply too much for Murray.

Only once did Murray throw a scare into Federer, taking 11 of 12 points to go from 2-0 down in the second set to 2-all and 0-40 on Federer's serve.  On the second break chance, a 14-stroke rally ended with Murray missing a backhand. TV replays, however, showed one of Federer's shots should have been called out, had it been, Murray would have led 3-2. 

In the next game, Murray began clutching at his right knee and looking up at his substantial support group in the stands, a gathering that included his mother, two coaches and two trainers. Murray, though, said the knee had no bearing on the outcome.

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