Djokovic says Federer remains the man to beat

September 8th, 2008 - 1:32 pm ICT by IANS  

New York, Sep 8 (DPA) Novak Djokovic now has another reason not to doubt the recovery powers of Roger Federer after collapsing to a four-set loss against the Swiss to exit the US Open.The pair, who played last year’s final, got in their semi-final before torrential rain swept the grounds at Flushing Meadows, throwing the weekend schedule into panic mode.

Djokovic stands a modest 2-7 against the Swiss world No. 2, one of his wins coming in this year’s Australian Open semis with Federer suffering the effects of glandular fever.

“He’s been very dominant in the last four years, he’s been the best player in the world,” said Djokovic, making the obvious point. “This year you have to give credit to (Paris, Wimbledon and Olympic champion Rafael) Nadal, because he’s playing the best season, best year so far, and he’s been winning so many matches.”

But Djokovic, who could have surpassed Federer to take over the No. 2 ranking had he gone on to win the tournaments, added: “Roger is still there.

“And even though people are talking about him not playing so well this year, he’s still very consistent. All Grand Slams he was in semis, finals.

“He played well against me even though throughout this tournament he had some difficulties. But that’s his strength. Whenever he needs to play well, he plays his best.”

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