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Australian Open

14.01.2006 | Tennis


Roger is the overwhelming favorite at the injury-depleted Australian Open that starts on Monday. “I’m used to it,” Roger said this week. “Red hot or hot favorite — it really doesn’t matter.”


It is the eighth time in Roger's career, since Roland Garros 2004, that Roger holds the number one position at a Grand Slam.


Roger's chances look good, since the men’s field is missing defending champion Marat Safin, second-ranked Rafael Nadal and four-time winner Andre Agassi. “I don’t have to raise the bar” to keep winning, said Roger. “I have to stay hungry — that’s not too hard.”


Roger has lost twice in the last six Grand Slam tournaments, dating back to Wimbledon 2004. Both his conquerers decided they weren’t in any kind of shape to repeat such a feat at Melbourne Park. Safin was lauded for his unpredictable genius when he upset Roger in last year’s semifinals and went on to beat local favorite Lleyton Hewitt in the final. Nadal was at his precocious peak when he overcame Federer on the red Roland Garros clay one match before he clinched the French Open title.


Safin and Nadal pulled out with lingering knee and foot injuries, leaving Andy Roddick and Hewitt as Roger’s main rivals.


“It might be Roger versus the field, but for the rest of us, it’s us versus our first-round opponent,” said Andy Roddick. “He obviously made it like that by playing so well over the last couple of years.


Roger will face Denis Istomin, number 195 in the world ranking, in the opening round on Monday. "I've never heard about him, so I can't tell you anything on the subject. I'll go and find out."

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01/15/2006 | 03:23 PM
U r the winner,sure.
Many tennis players have pain so much.
So u will get win very easy and don't play hard
But u will be careful.
Go Federer!!
01/15/2006 | 01:10 PM
Hey Roger, good luck in Australia! I think you'll get an easy tournament this year! Who can beat you? Roddick - the second seed - no, Hewit - no, Nalbandian - no!

01/15/2006 | 12:57 PM
Stay focused you know when you play YOUR game no one can stay with you and keep you from victory. Juct give us some wonderfull flowing tennis and we'll be happy. When you play like that result is obvious VICTORY.
01/15/2006 | 12:44 PM
The best of luck to you, Roger! I'm very much looking forward to the next 2 weeks and I'll try and watch all your matches. Please don't injure yourself and stay cool. I'm positive you'll win!

Enjoy the tournament! XX
01/15/2006 | 11:30 AM
Dear Roger!!! The Australian Open is a fantastic tournament, and I only hope that your injury is finished, finally! If you are in good fisic conditions I'll sure you can show your magic tennis!! Come on Roger!!!
01/15/2006 | 11:24 AM
Viil, viiil Glück! All your fans will cross fingers.
01/15/2006 | 11:11 AM
I hope the Australian Open cup comes home to Switzerland again:))) Best of luck!
01/15/2006 | 10:12 AM
Dear Roger,
I'll certainly watch you play!!!
Taiwan will have AO live!!
I know you'll get it!!
Besides, Safin and Nadal is not going to play.A little bit sad about this!
Well, anyway, Good luck!!
01/15/2006 | 08:17 AM
Hurry up & find out.....it's all in your own site!
01/15/2006 | 07:53 AM
Hi Roger, I just wanted to wish you all the best for your Aussie Open campaign. Good luck for the first hurdle - Istomin. I guess it's can be a bit difficult playing someone you know nothing about and have never played before but you are such a champion
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