Hewitt beats Federer to claim seventh grass court title

Kieran Beckles
By Kieran Beckles
lleyton hewitt

Hewitt came from a set down to beat Federer in Halle

Lleyton Hewitt produced a brilliant comeback to beat Roger Federer 3-6 7-6 (4) 6-4 in the final of the Gerry Weber Open in Germany.

It marks Hewitt’s seventh grass court title and brings to an end a dismal run of 15 straight defeats against Federer with the Australian last having enjoyed success over his Swiss opponent in 2003.

“It’s fantastic,” said Hewitt afterwards. “Roger’s a hell of an opponent; his grass-court record speaks for itself. Any time you play Roger on a grass court you know you’re in for a hell of a battle and I was lucky to get out of today’s match.”

The 29-year-old dropped the first set after Federer secured the vital break in the sixth game. It appeared normal service had resumed for the six-time Wimbledon champion following last week’s quarter-final exit against Robin Soderling at Roland Garros.

Federer held a 0-40 lead on Hewitt’s fifth service game of the second set but Hewitt defied the odds and fought back to deuce, eventually holding serve and winning the set in a tense tiebreak.

The 2002 Wimbledon champion continued to apply pressure to Federer’s game and secured an early break at the start of the decisive set.

Hewitt was forced to serve for his 98th victory on a grass court at 5-4 and despite allowing Federer to seize a 0-30 lead, the tenacious counter-puncher fought back and claimed victory on the first match-point.

Despite showing patchy form, Federer remains optimistic of defending his Wimbledon crown then the All England Championships begin next week.

“I’m happy with the way I’m playing,” said Federer. “It’s unfortunate not coming through today, but I think my level of play is fine.”

“This loss here doesn’t worry me in any way. So, I’m excited about next week. And I thought it was a good tournament.”

MORE:

MORE: The latest football news

MORE: The latest tennis news

BIOGRAPHY: Daniel Sturridge

BIOGRAPHY: Kepa Arrizabalaga

The Sport Review
ATP Awards: Federer, Nadal and Djokovic headline nominees again, but fresh names emerge
The Sport Review
Take a tour of Cristiano Ronaldo’s stunning house in Madrid
The Sport Review
Top 50 Muslim footballers: Arsenal, Chelsea FC, Liverpool FC and Man United stars feature
The Sport Review
Take a tour of Arsenal star Mesut Ozil’s £10m London house with us
The Sport Review
Top 50 most stylish footballers in the world in 2017: Chelsea, Arsenal stars feature – Slideshow
The Sport Review
Maurizio Sarri told Chelsea FC need key signing in January
The Sport Review
Liverpool FC prepare bid to sign 25-year-old Bundesliga star – report
The Sport Review
Paul Merson explains why Arsenal have withdrawn Aaron Ramsey offer