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Federer satisfied with win

World number one Roger Federer overcame a sticky start to launch his US Open campaign with a 7-5 6-2 6-4 victory over Albert Costa.
PTI | By Martyn Herman (Reuters), New York
PUBLISHED ON AUG 31, 2004 11:11 AM IST

World number one Roger Federer overcame a sticky start to launch his US Open campaign with a 7-5 6-2 6-4 victory over Spain's Albert Costa on Monday.

The Swiss, bidding to become the first man to win three Grand Slam titles in the same year since Mats Wilander in 1988, lost his opening service game to the former French Open champion, a player who had beaten him on their previous two meetings.

But he recovered to win a scrappy first set before moving through the gears to seize control of a match that had been billed as a potential banana skin.

Federer, looking to improve on a mediocre US Open record where he is yet to reach the last eight, waltzed through the second set and despite a slight wobble when serving at 5-3 in the third he said he was satisfied with his form.

"That was a terrible service game, I didn't close it out like I usually do," he said. "But overall I thought it was a really good match for me today, I can certainly build on that for the next round.

"It was important to play aggressive and get a lot of serves in and that's what I did, I think that was the difference in the end."

Federer faces qualifier Marcos Baghdatis in the second round after he disposed of Frenchman Olivier Mutis in four sets to become the first Cypriot to win a grand slam match.

Looking further ahead Federer said 2001 champion Australian Lleyton Hewitt could be the real dangerman at the year's final grand slam.

"I know how tough he is, especially on American hardcourts," said Federer. "I definitely think he is one of the top four contenders with myself, Andy Roddick and Andre Agassi.

"Once he gets going he's very hard to stop. He hasn't played that much in the last one and a half years so he's got a lot of energy in the tank."

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