Roger Federer of Switzerland defeated Andy Murray of Scotland 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (13-11) for a fourth Australian Open championship and a record 16th Grand Slam tournament title.
MELBOURNE, Australia — Roger Federer of Switzerland experienced a range of emotions at the last two Australian Open tennis tournaments.
A year ago, he sobbed on court after losing a thrilling final to Rafael Nadal of Spain in five sets.
But Federer was all smiles Sunday after rather easily beating Andy Murray of Scotland 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (13-11) for a fourth championship in Melbourne and a record 16th Grand Slam tournament title.
“All of a sudden, it was over, and it hit me,” Federer said. “It was very much a roller coaster.”
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Murray missed a chance to end a drought for British men at Grand Slam tournaments that dates to 1936. Federer can aim at a calendar-year Grand Slam, something no man has accomplished since 1969.
“I’m over the moon winning this again,” the 28-year-old Federer said. “I played some of my best tennis in my life these last two weeks.”
Federer was in control of the action against Murray, Afterward, it was the 22-year-old whose voice was breaking and who was choking back tears.
“I can cry like Roger,” said Murray, who is 6-5 against Federer. “It’s just a shame I can’t play like him.”
Compounding the emotions for Federer in Australia a year ago: He missed a chance to tie Pete Sampras’ then-record of 14 Grand Slam singles titles. But Federer didn’t have to wait long. He matched that mark a few months later at the French Open, where he also completed a career Grand Slam by winning a major on clay to go with his grass and hardcourt titles.
Federer took the Wimbledon crown for major No. 15. In his first major after his twin daughters were born, he was upset in the U.S. Open final by Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina.
Federer said Murray and Nadal helped him improve.
“I always knew I had it in my hand. The question is, do I have it in my mind and in my legs?” he said. “That’s something I had to work extremely hard at.
“Now I feel, like, obviously I’m being pushed a great deal by the new generation coming up. They’ve made me a better player, because I think this has been one of my finest performances in a long time, or maybe forever.”
Of Murray’s quest to win a major event, Federer said, “His game is so good, I’m convinced he’ll win one. He’s extremely strong in his mind. I feel he’s got the game to do it; it’s just a matter of when.”
• A charity match initiated by Federer to raise money for Haiti earthquake victims has raised more than $600,000, said Tennis Australia president Geoff Pollard.
|All-time major titles|
|Through 2010 Australian Open|
Key: A — Australian Open; F — French Open; W — Wimbledon; US — U.S. Open