Roger Federer disappointed when his US Open offer ends abruptly
NEW YORK: Roger Federer he struggled to hide his disappointment after his attempt for a first United States Open title since 2008 ended abruptly on Tuesday with a five-set loss to Grigor Dimitrov in the quarterfinals.
The 38-year-old Swiss had defeated Dimitrov in the previous seven meetings, but delivered two sets to an advantage before falling to a 3-6, 6-4, 3-6, 6-4, 6-2 loss.
Federer, a five-time United States Open champion, left the court for a private medical timeout to treat his upper back near his neck before the final set but refused to blame injury as the reason for his exit.
I felt it all the time. I could play with him. It was bad not to win, Federer said. This is Grigor's moment and not my body's moment, so that's fine.
This is how I did it. I did my best. By far, it's not too bad to give up or anything. Grigor could get me away. I struggled with what I had.
He refused to Federer in five break points in the tenth game of the fourth set and Dimitrov, who occupies the 78th place, had to force a fifth set, before the Bulgarian broke his opponent twice in a row to effectively seal the victory .
I had moments when I was in the lead most of the time. I had the opportunity to return in the room. The beginning of the room was not ideal. The beginning of the fifth was not ideal. That was late. It was difficult, Federer said.
Just disappointed because it all ended because I felt I was playing really well after a couple of difficult starts.
It is only a missed opportunity to some extent that you are in the lead, you can overcome it, you have two days off afterwards. It looked good. But you have to take the losses. They are part of the game.
Federer's most stabbing defeat came in the Wimbledon final in July, when he wasted two match points while serving for the trophy against Novak Djokovic.
He was adamant he had moved on from that near-miss, insisting it had no bearing on his performance against Dimitrov, the lowest-ranked United States Open semi-finalist since Jimmy Connors (174th) in 1991.
I know people read about that. They think all that. That is definitely not the reason why I lost tonight. I was ready to go, do my best. It was not enough, Federer said.
When asked if he felt he would have more opportunities to increase his record for 20 individual Grand Slam titles for men, Federer replied: I don't have the crystal ball.
We never know I hope so, of course. I think it has still been a positive season. Disappointing now, but I'll go back up, I'll be fine, he added.
Federer has already qualified for a 17th appearance at the finals of the ATP Tour in London, along with Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal and Daniil Medvedev, and has no immediate plans to reduce his end-of-season commitments.
I think Laver Cup, Shanghai, Basel, maybe Paris, London. That is the calendar for now, he said.
I don't know if the team has other ideas or not. I am happy to rest a little now, re-practice, reassess and attack from there.