Quick-fire Federer fulfils his social obligation (Australian Open Notebook)

January 19th, 2009 - 1:17 pm ICT by IANS  

Roger FedererMelbourne, Jan 19 (DPA) Roger Federer was all business at the Australian Open player party, putting in a quick appearance before making an exit out the back door to return to his peace and tranquillity prior to his Monday start.The Swiss second seed was concentrating his energies on stopping first-round opponent Andreas Seppi, with little time for socialising.

Federer’s pit stop at the Mexican restaurant in the Crown casino complex, where he has stayed for some years during the annual Grand Slam event, was as well-choreographed as his straight-set wins on court.

He posed for a few pictures, spoke with a handful of television reporters and then made his smooth exit.

Other players had more time to spare, with Sydney winner David Nalbandian actually getting in a few laps in a nearby swimming pool. James Blake and women’s top seed Jelena Jankovic stuck around the party scene a bit longer than Federer.

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Federer in it for 2012 and beyond

Melbourne: Roger Federer knows he is in tennis for the long haul, and is now expecting to figure in the sport well beyond the 2012 London Olympics.

With his immediate objective a fourth Australian Open title as the first Grand Slam of the season began Monday, the 27-year-old has - as always - cast his eye well into the future.

“I want to do well not only this year but many more years to come,” said the 13-time Grand Slam champion. “I don’t feel like this year is my last chance to either win the French Open or pick up a few Slams more easily.

“They never come around easily. Let’s not forget who I had to beat in all my Slam finals to get them, who I had to beat on the way. I’m expecting more of this in the future: they will be tough to win. But I know I’ve got the game to do it, so we’ll see what happens.”

The 27-year-old said that he hoped to play up to four years beyond the 2012 London Olympics.

“I would like to play for a very long time,” Federer said. “I feel healthy. I have got a game that doesn’t consume too much energy, so that’s a big benefit for me looking ahead.”

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