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Sunday, February 22, 2009

Lammer wants to repay Federer's faith

Dubai: Michael Lammer is a guest of former world No 1 and four-time Dubai champion Roger Federer. And today, he wants to repay this hospitality to one of the world's best players by advancing "as far as possible" in the main draw of the Barclays Dubai Tennis Championships.

"Roger is a good friend and he has allowed me to stay at his apartment here. I hope I can compensate this gesture by going as far as possible in the main draw," Lammer told Gulf News after winning 6-1, 6-3 against Jonathan Dasnieresde Veigy of France yesterday.

"You cannot compare anyone to Roger, and I cannot replace him here. But I hope I will do well in the main competition," the Swiss said.

The 26-year-old is Federer's contemporary on court, seizing every opportunity to learn about tennis from his more gifted countryman.

"A player like Roger comes once in a lifetime. We've had some great sportspeople, but Martina (Hingis) and Roger definitely stand out. Roger is always there to help any of us any time. And besides, he is such a great friend too," Lammer said.

Switzerland received another bonus when Marco Chiudinelli went through 7-6 (1), 6-4 in his match against Paolo Lorenzi of Italy to make it two Swiss players in the main draw.

Currently ranked after 400, Chiudinelli made it to the qualifiers after receiving a wild card as the winner of the annual Aviation Cup, held at the end of the year.

Also advancing to the main draw of the competition were Laurent Recouderc with a 6-4, 6-4 win against Rik De Voest. Italy's Flavio Cipolla defeated Marsel Ilhan of Turkey 6-2, 6-4 to advance into the main competition, which starts at 2 pm today.


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