Super talented Swiss Roger Federer gained first significant results on the ATP Tour in 2001, reaching the quarter-final at Roland Garros and Wimbledon. At the All England Club, the youngster took down the seven-time champion Pete Sampras in five sets en route to the last eight, becoming one of the players to watch. A year later, Roger played in the Miami Open final and earned the first Masters 1000 trophy in Hamburg in May, entering the elite top-10 group on the next day and heading to Roland Garros and Wimbledon with big expectations. Instead, the last year’s quarter-finalist had to leave both Majors much earlier than he expected, losing in the opening round in Paris and London and struggling to find the desired level in the next couple of months. Nonetheless, the Vienna title and a couple of other notable results on an indoor surface brought Federer back into the top-10.
Roger Federer hoped for better results at Roland Garros and Wimbledon in 2003.
He earned a place at his first Masters Cup and reached the semis after three round-robin wins. After a slow start of the 2003 campaign due to an injury, Federer was back at his best from February, winning titles in Marseille and Dubai and earning most victories on the entire Tour ahead of Indian Wells. Following the victory over Felix Mantilla in the second round in the desert, Roger said he wants to qualify for the Masters Cup for the second time. Also, the Swiss felt eager to raise his level at Roland Garros and Wimbledon, having no points to defend there and hoping to compete at both events with no pressure.
“Australia was a disappointment; I could have done better there. I made a scary start with a little bit of groin trouble, not knowing if everything would be fine at the Australian Open. Luckily, it was. I have to say that I made a good start to the season for the last couple of years; I won the Hopman Cup, it was Sydney last year and now Marseille and Dubai. I think it’s essential, and it always carries me through; it gives me confidence and puts the pressure off my back to do well and stay at the top of the ATP Race. My goal is to reach the Masters Cup again, and I’m off to a good start. I have to play better than last year at Roland Garros and Wimbledon; those were my significant failures in 2002. I will go there without pressure to defend points; that also helps sometimes,” Roger Federer said.