Hewitt stuns Federer in Brisbane final|
Brisbane, Australia (SportsNetwork.com) - Australian Lleyton Hewitt thrilled
his home country crowd by shocking top-seeded Roger Federer in three sets to
capture the Brisbane International on Sunday.
Hewitt's 6-1, 4-6, 6-3 victory ensured his first title since 2010 in Halle. It
was his 29th championship and seventh in Australia. The unseeded Hewitt beat
Federer for just the second time in the last 18 meetings.
Both players, at age 32, showed their sheer determination on the court, but
Hewitt was able to sustain some hard-fought service games to come out on top.
In their first meeting since the Davis Cup in 2011, it looked as if Hewitt
would breeze to the shocking win, but Federer rallied in the second set to
force the decisive third.
Hewitt got the break to move to a 3-1 lead Federer was behind 5-2 after he
delivered a poor return following a strong backhand from the Aussie. Hewitt
then closed the match in 2 hours, 7 minutes.
Before Sunday, Hewitt won the most recent ATP Tour matchup, stunning Federer
in the final of the Wimbledon tune-up in Halle back in 2010. That victory
ended a 15-match losing streak for Hewitt in the series and was the last of
his ATP titles, which has since been bumped up.
Hewitt owns a 29-16 mark in title matches. He lost in the Newport final last
year in his only appearance in a final. Hewitt is 9-18 all-time against
"For me getting towards the end of my career and trying to help out Australian
tennis as much as possible, the biggest thing is marketing here," Hewitt said
as he addressed the crowd. "We've had such a rich tradition of tennis in this
great country and we want to produce the best juniors coming through. Having
you (Federer) come here and play in these smaller tournaments really helps."
The former No. 1 Federer remains tied with John McEnroe in third place with 77
career championships. Sunday marked the first time his serve was broken in
this week's tournament.
The 2013 year was a lackluster one for the super Swiss. Federer had just one
title and no Grand Slam final appearances for the first time since 2002. He is
77-37 all-time in finals.
"I have a busy year ahead of me with a baby coming, but I will try to ensure
you that I'll come back," Federer said about hoping to return to the
tournament in Brisbane.
This event served as a tune-up for the Australian Open. The first Grand Slam
event of 2014 is set to get underway Jan. 13 in Melbourne. Federer is a four-
time Aussie Open champion.
01/05 04:07:43 ET