Roger Federer: Swiss star makes huge Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray claim | Tennis | Sport

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Nadal is currently out with a recurrence of his hip injury, Djokovic is struggling after elbow problems and Murray is recovering from major surgery in January.

In their absence this year, Federer has dominated the season, winning the Australian Open and the Rotterdam Open to become the oldest world No 1 in history.

At their peak, Federer, Nadal, Djokovic and Murray have monopolised the men’s game.

But Federer conceded that though he misses those players, he does prefer not having to beat them.

Federer said: “I mean, a bit of both, I guess.

“Many times I have looked at the draw and, Oh, God, Rafa, is my second round or something. So I prefer if Rafa is not in my second round (smiling).

“At the same time, I enjoy playing the guy, just because it’s one of the ultimate challenges to play Novak, Andy, Rafa, Stan, you name it, all these guys.

“But of course there is a different vibe when all these guys are not around.

“It’s not in your control. You can only beat the guy who’s opposite to you.

“When I look at the matches from last night or yesterday, they’re all in the other section, so I can watch it more as a fan, you know, which I enjoy a lot, to be honest.”

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