Roger Federer Dodges Round 1 Wimbledon Upset

Alejandro Falla very nearly eliminated the 6-time champ
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jun 21, 2010 5:42 PM CDT
Roger Federer Dodges Round 1 Wimbledon Upset
Switzerland's Roger Federer, right, is congratulated by Colombia's Alejandro Falla after their first round match at the All England Lawn Tennis Championships at Wimbledon, Monday, June 21, 2010.    (Anja Niedringhaus)

(Newser) – For Roger Federer, Wimbledon nearly ended at the beginning. The six-time champ overcame a two-set deficit to avert a monumental first-round upset, beating Alejandro Falla 5-7, 4-6, 6-4, 7-6 (1), 6-0. Federer has reached the tournament final each of the past seven years, but today he barely survived the traditional opening match on Centre Court as defending champion.

"I live another day," Federer said. "This one is one I should have lost." The 60th-ranked Falla had lost all 11 sets in his previous four matches against Federer, but the Colombian played brilliant tennis to take charge of the match. The turnaround came in the fourth set with Falla serving for the match and three points from victory, when Federer broke for only the second time. Federer played his best after that. It's the third time in a row he has won after losing the first two sets at a Grand Slam event, but the close call was a new experience in such an early round. "You definitely feel uncomfortable," Federer said. "For me it's not normal to be down two sets to love." (Read more Roger Federer stories.)

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