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Federer pips them all in the Big Apple

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Swiss tennis ace Roger Federer has won his fourth successive United States Open in New York, beating Novak Djokovic of Serbia in three sets 7-6, 7-6 and 6-4.

This content was published on September 10, 2007 - 08:31

The world number one captured his 12th grand slam title, wearing down his third-seeded opponent in two hours and 26 minutes.

Federer, 26, became the first man since Bill Tilden in the 1920s to win four straight US championships and now has his sights on the record 14 major titles won by Pete Sampras.

"I think about it a lot now," Federer said of Sampras's achievement. "To come so close at my age is fantastic, and I hope to break it."

Despite winning in straight sets, Federer admitted that the game had not been easy.

In Djokovic, Federer was facing the only man to beat him over the past three months - in early August in Montreal.

“In the beginning I felt pushed a little bit in the corner, because you don’t win slams just like that. It’s just too tough."

Exhausted

“I feel these two-and-a-half weeks, it’s so draining. I’m exhausted in the end,” he said.

Djokovic was in his first slam final, yet he led 6-5 in each of the opening two sets. In the first, the 20-year-old Serb held five set points. In the second, he held two.

"My next book is going to be called 'Seven Set Points'," Djokovic said, flashing the sense of humour he displayed while doing on-court impersonations of other players after his quarter-final victory.

On a more serious note, Djokovic said of Federer: "Once again, he showed he's the best."

Afterwards Federer said Djokovic might join Spain’s Rafael Nadal as a challenger to his supremacy.

“It’s very possible, you know. Honestly I’ve enjoyed the challenge of young guys challenging me. This is probably my biggest motivation out there.”

Federer has been world number one for 189 weeks and is set to end his fourth consecutive year in the top position.

swissinfo with agencies

In brief

The US Open is Federer's 12th grand slam title, two short of Pete Sampras's record.

He has won four times at Flushing Meadows, five times at Wimbledon and three titles at the Australian Open. But the French Open title still eludes him.

Grand slam titles (open era):
14: Pete Sampras
12: Roger Federer
11: Björn Borg
8: Andre Agassi, Jimmy Connors, Ivan Lendl

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Roger Federer profile

Date of birth: August 8, 1981
Height: 185cm
Weight: 80kg
Plays: Right-handed, single-handed backhand
Turned pro: 1998

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US Open facts

Surface: Hard court.

2007 Men's Singles Champion: Roger Federer
2007 Women's Singles Champion: Justine Henin of Belgium

Prize money: the men's and women's singles champions receive $1.4 million (SFr1.68 million) each.

Federer will take home a record $2.4 million that includes a special bonus for best overall result in a series of North American tournaments.

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