Tiafoe torn apart in Federer's Basel lair

Roger Federer did not offer Frances Tiafoe so much as a sniff of an upset, the veteran winning in straight sets at the Swiss Indoors Basel.

Switzerland's Roger Federer returns during his match against Frances Tiafoe of United States at the Swiss Indoors ATP 500 tournament.   -  AFP

Teenager Frances Tiafoe proved unable to better some daring US Open exploits against Roger Federer in his latest meeting with the evergreen maestro, who started his bid for an eighth title at the Swiss Indoors Basel with a comprehensive 6-1 6-3 victory.

The American took Federer to five sets in the first round at Flushing Meadows in August but proved no match for him in the 36-year-old's own backyard on Tuesday.

The world number two is intimately familiar with the ATP 500 event at St. Jakobshalle, where he has lifted the title on seven occasions and finished as runner-up five times, with his first appearance in the decider coming way back in 2000.

And Federer put all that practice to good use against Tiafoe, breaking him four times without offering the young pretender so much as a break-point chance throughout the contest to secure victory in just 61 minutes.


Enjoying the support of a partisan home crowd, Federer put Tiafoe's serve under heavy pressure in the first game of the match. The American recovered from 15-40 down to get back to deuce, only to send a backhand long and give up the break at the fourth time of asking.

And the world number 76 soon gave fell further behind following an electric battle at the net, Federer clinching it with a volley that just caught the line, having also conjured up a magical drop shot to take control of the game.

An aggressive body serve helped Tiafoe to hold either side of two dominant Federer service games, the second to love after a cross-court return from the youngster sailed wide.

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And the beleaguered Tiafoe had no answer to the Swiss great in game seven, Federer dispatching a fierce off-forehand winner down the line before more rally-ball errors from his opponent saw the veteran wrap up the first set in just 28 minutes.

Tiafoe refused to wilt, improving his quality and consistency to help keep the second set on serve until the eighth game, when Federer ratcheted up the pressure to draw a forehand error and the only break of the set.

A netted volley then sealed Tiafoe's fate, but there was no disgrace in losing to the winner of 19 grand slam singles titles, who will take on Benoit Paire in the second round.

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