Mon, Oct 09, 2006 - Page 20 News List

Unstoppable Federer beats Henman for his debut Tokyo title

DPA , TOKYO

Roger Federer capped a successful debut at the AIG Open yesterday with a 6-3, 6-3 defeat of Briton Tim Henman to lift a ninth trophy this season.

The Swiss world No. 1 fulfilled all expectations at the Arieke colosseum as he improved his record over Henman to 7-6 in a 67 minute display on hardcourt.

Federer, already qualified as end of season No. 1 for the third year in succession, claimed the honors on a third match point from Henman's forehand error.

It was Henman's first final since a loss to Federer in the Californian desert at Indian Wells in the 2004 final at that Masters Series event.

The 32-year-old Briton won the last of his 11 titles in late 2003 at Paris Bercy.

The win was the second straight-forward victory in as many days for Federer, who struggled in the quarter-finals to stamp out a challenge from Japan's Takao Suzuki, who stands outside the Top 1,000.

Federer professed surprise at his accomplishment.

"Keeping on winning is very difficult," the top seed said. "I arrived [last week] with some jet-lag," he said. "But to win the tournament straight away is fantastic."

Federer stands an impeccable 42 career trophies from 55 finals, and improved to 77-5 on the season.

The nine-time Grand Slam winner will next play at the Madrid Masters in a week after missing the indoor autumn season last year with an ankle injury.

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