(February 25, 2013) Dubai UAE - Roger Federer began the defense of his title at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships on Monday but he was stretched to three sets before overcoming Tunisian wild card Malek Jaziri 5-7, 6-0, 6-2.
Jaziri showed no sign of nerves as he competed on equal terms throughout the opening set, before breaking to lead 6-5 when Federer netted a backhand.
Federer responded to losing the first set by sweeping through the second with ease, as Jaziri failed even to earn a game point until he trailed 5-0. Even so, it was Jaziri who earned the first opportunity in the final set, holding a break point to lead 2-1.
But he made an error on his return and Federer recovered to win that game and then from 2-2 the number two seed gave up just three points in the last four games.
“I had rocky starts to the tournament here in previous years,” said Federer. “And, you know, I played somewhat fast so there was not much rhythm out there. I think we were both not playin...