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Calm Federer not fretting over Rafa

sports Updated: Feb 13, 2013 00:51 IST

Roger Federer welcomed the return to tennis of Rafael Nadal, but will not spend much time worrying about his long-time rival's progress as he concentrates on his own game with a Wednesday start at the Rotterdam World Tennis.

While Federer was making his preparations, there was disappointment on court for third seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga as the French player went down to Igor Sijsling of the Netherlands 7-6 (7/3), 4-6, 6-4. Even 14 aces could not help Tsonga in the two-hour match, with the seed converting only one of eight break point chances.

Top seed Federer, defending his 2012 trophy said he has arrived relaxed and eager as he plays for the first time since losing a tight Australian Open semi-final to Andy Murray, then taking time off with his family in his homes in Dubai and Switzerland.

"I saw a few pictures of Rafa, last week," said Federer, who joked: "I see he's still a left-hander - and his shirts looked good."

"I'm happy to see him back and playing on the Tour," said the two-time Rotterdam champion.

"He seems to have good energy. I was surprised he lost a final against a player ranked outside the top 50."

After seven months away recovering from tendon damage in his left knee, Nadal lost both the singles and doubles finals at the VTR Open in Chile.

Nadal tired but positive
Sao Paulo: Rafael Nadal said Tuesday that he felt a bit tired after a hard but positive tournament in Chile but vowed to do his best at this week`s Brazil Open.

"I am happy to be here in Brazil for the second time," the 26-year-old told a press conference. "My knee is OK, it limits me a bit but I have confidence it will improve. I am a bit tired after a hard week. But it was positive. The process of recovery follows its course."

Wheelchair star calls it a day
London: One of the most dominant records in sport came to an unblemished end when Dutch wheelchair tennis player Esther Vergeer hung up her racket after an unbeaten decade. The 31-year-old, who won four Paralympic singles gold and three in doubles, won 470 consecutive matches and 120 successive tournaments.