Shanghai, 18 October 2010 | AFP
Roger Federer tried to put a brave face on his Shanghai Masters performance despite being crushed by Andy Murray in the final 6-3 6-2.
The Swiss felt the tennis gods were against him in the match, with fourth-ranked Scot Murray defeating Federer in their second consecutive Masters final meeting.
“Every time it got important, it was not going my way,” the 16-time grand slam champion said.
“You feel like it’s a wave coming at you and you just can’t escape it. That’s kind of the feeling I had today.
“You don’t play with frustration, you just try to play decent.
“But against top guys who are in the lead and who are on a roll, it’s hard to turn it around,” added Federer, who has secured only two titles this season.
“I had some chances but I couldn’t break through. He played great and didn’t give me much.”
Murray’s victory denied Federer the chance to equal the all-time best of 18 Masters titles held by Rafael Nadal.
But by way of solace, Federer will return to second in the world rankings on Monday after defeating Novak Djokovic in the semifinals.
With his mind now focused on next week in Stockholm, Federer was determined to emphasise the positives from his China outing.
“I had a good tournament. I thought I played well this week,” he said.
“I had some great wins against [Robin] Soderling, [Joh] Isner, [Andreas] Seppi, also [Novak] Djokovic.
“I’m very happy with where my game is at.
“Today could have been better. But, look, Andy was the best player of the tournament so he deserved it.”
Federer dropped to 5-8 against Murray, who said he enjoys testing himself against the former No.1 on any occasion.
“My forehand was working really well all week, but today I just couldn’t get it working, especially when it mattered. Other than that, it wasn’t that bad,” Federer said.
“It was just a matter of getting a bit of luck on my side, which I didn’t get.
“Missing so many important shots really over and over again obviously took a lot of my confidence away.”