WONDERFUL! Roger Federer Wins His First Grand Slam Match in 487 Days at French Open 2021 Against Denis Istomin

Published 05/31/2021, 12:08 PM EDT
Tennis – French Open – Roland Garros, Paris, France – May 31, 2021 Switzerland’s Roger Federer celebrates winning his first round match against Uzbekistan’s Denis Istomin REUTERS/Benoit Tessier


If there’s a top ranked player who entered the French Open this year with little to no expectations, it is the Swiss Maestro Roger Federer. From his exploits in his previous two tournaments at Qatar and Geneva, Federer understood that his road to recovery might not be as easy as it was in 2017.

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Tennis – ATP 250 – Qatar Open – The Khalifa International Tennis and Squash Complex, Doha, Qatar – March 10, 2021 Switzerland’s Roger Federer in action during his first round match against Great Britain’s Dan Evans Tennis Federation/Samer Al-Rejjal/Handout via REUTERS

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As a result, a huge burden was taken off from the Swiss star to perform well at Roland Garros. He can use this tournament to extract as much practice as possible for the grass-court season.

But, the former world number one also gave an indication that he would be tough to beat as usual on the Parisian clay.

Roger Federer dominated Denis Istomin in the 2021 French Open first round

The Swiss Maestro faced Denis Istomin in the first round. Istomin failed to defeat Federer in all of their seven meetings before on the ATP tour. But, he could do some damage by winning a set or two.

However, Federer had different plans for the Uzbek tennis player. Right from the first set, the Swiss Maestro launched a ruthless attack against Istomin. Even though clay expects a lot of rallies, Federer made use of drop shots efficiently to confuse his opponent.

The first set was the result of some elegant tennis from the Swiss Maestro, as he made 95% of the first serves in, and hit 15 winners to just 6 unforced errors. The Uzbek couldn’t do much to the stop the flow of Federer as he lost the set 2-6.

Tennis – ATP 250 – Geneva Open – Tennis Club de Geneve, Geneva, Switzerland – May 18, 2021 Switzerland’s Roger Federer reacts after losing his round of 16 match against Spain’s Pablo Andujar REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

It was in the second set that Istomin tried hard to stay in the match. He stayed toe-to-toe with Federer in few longer rallies that were played, but made too many unforced errors, and gave away a break point to the Swiss.

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The single-break point was enough for the former world number one to clinch the second set, 6-4. Federer’s only made 57% of the first serve in, and it was the only stat that took a beating from the first set.

Even in the third set, the 2009 French Open champion rushed Istomin by coming to the net every time on the second serve. With solid pressure from the baseline and from the net, the Uzbek player lost his serve in the fifth game.

In the ninth game of the third set, Federer got a couple of match points, and he didn’t waste time in closing the match in an hour and 33 minutes. The Swiss star will now await the winner of the matchup between Marin Cilic and Arthur Rinderknech.

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Sagar Ashtakoula

411 articles

Sagar Ashtakoula is a tennis writer at EssentiallySports. He has been following the sport since 2007. Having developed an interest in creating content, he mixed his passion for writing with his love for tennis for 2 years at SportsKeeda before joining the tennis team at EssentiallySports.

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