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Federer out in first round

Federer returns a ball to Gaudenzi in their match in Rome

(Keystone)

Switzerland's Roger Federer has crashed out of the first round of the ATP-Masters-Series in Rome on Tuesday.

The world number-11 lost against Italian former top-20 player Andrea Gaudenzi 4:6, 4:6 - prompting questions about his ability to handle clay-courts.

In a game dominated by a Gaudenzi's consistent play, Federer missed his only opportunity to break his opponent's serves early in the first set.

Federer went on to make some 21-unforced errors, almost two times as many as the Italian.

The loss is an ominous omen for the up-coming French Open, which like the Rome tournament, is played on clay.

The Basel-based Swiss has had a poor season so far on soft courts. He stumbled in the second round of the clay-court ATP in Monte Carlo earlier this year, in stark contrast to his finals appearance on hard court in Miami last month.

swissinfo with agencies


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