Federer wins opener at Madrid

Oct 16, 2007 - 10:45 PM MADRID, Spain (Ticker) -- Roger Federer was rust-free in his return to the ATP Tour.

The world's top ranked player returned from five-week break Tuesday and defeated qualifier Robby Ginepri, 7-6 (7-2), 6-4, in second-round play at the $3 million Masters Series event in Madrid.

One of 16 players to receive a first-round bye, the Swiss superstar was playing for the first time since winning his 12th career Grand Slam at the U.S. Open in last month.

The owner of 51 career singles titles, Federer has won 13 consecutive matches with his last defeat coming against world No. 3 Novak Djokovic in August at Montreal.

The defending champion here, Federer also improved to 11-2 at this hardcourt event with his businesslike victory. The 26-year-old was never broken during the 85-minute match and finished with an 11-1 advantage in aces.

"I was struggling in the beginning a little bit, Federer said. "I'm happy I won this match. It wasn't easy. Robby was playing well. He already played three matches here. It was a big win today, and I'm pretty happy."

To his credit, Ginepri saved three of the four breaks he faced, but Federer's consistent play proved too much as the American fell to 0-4 in the all-time series.

Federer has been absolutely dominant in the dozen tournaments he has played in this season, winning six titles and reaching the final on three other occasions.

The upset of the day was turned in by unseeded Argentine Juan Monaco, who disposed of No. 11 Tommy Haas, 6-4, 7-5, in second-round action. The win avenged a quarterfinals loss to the German last week in Stockholm.

The day's final second-round match saw a mild upset as unseeded Brit Andy Murray defeated No. 15 Juan Ignacio Chela by a 6-1, 6-3 count.

Murray was a high as No. 8 in the world rankings this year but a wrist injury interrupted his season and caused him to drop to 17th.

Claiming first-round wins Tuesday were Juan Carlos Ferrero, David Nalbandian, Nicolas Almagro, Agustin Calleri, Nicolas Kiefer, Ivo Karlovic and Paul-Henri Mathieu.

Karlovic blasted 17 aces in his, 6-3, 6-4, win over Marat Safin to improve his season total to 1,052 the third highest amount since the ATP began tracking the statistic in 1991.

First prize is $480,000.

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