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Monday, 18 June 2018

Federer Returns to World No. 1

The Swiss, playing his first tournament since March after skipping the clay-court season, beat Milos Raonic 6-4 7-6 (7/3) for his 98th career title.

His run to the final in Germany ensured he usurped long-time rival Rafael Nadal as the world number one, and if he wins in Halle next week – a traditional Federer stronghold – he will arrive at Wimbledon in July looking for a century of wins.

It was Raonic who memorably left Federer on the Centre Court floor on his way to the 2016 Wimbledon final, but the 36-year-old was in no mood to allow a repeat.

A single break of serve in the first set was enough for him to take that, though he did have to fend off two break points on his own delivery.

Neither player could muster any break points in a second set heavily dominated by the serve, meaning it had to be decided by a tie-break, which Federer won.

It secured his third title of 2018, his 18th on grass and puts him on the verge of a century of crowns.
The 20-time grand slam singles winner next heads to Halle for a tournament he has won eight times in total and in four of the last five years.

Victory there would put him one away from becoming just the second man to win 100 singles titles, behind Jimmy Connors on 109.

Richard Gasquet ended a two-year wait for a title after winning the Libema Open in s-Hertogenbosch.

Gasquet won an all-French battle with Jeremy Chardy 6-3 7-6 (7/5) to lift a first trophy since Montpellier in 2016 and first on grass since 2006.

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