Federer overwhelms Henman in Japan Open final

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The Independent Online

Roger Federer's stranglehold over Tim Henman continued as the Swiss secured a 6-3 6-3 victory to take the Japan Open title in Tokyo.

It is the sixth consecutive defeat for the 32-year-old Henman against the world number one and his third this year, having lost to Federer at Wimbledon and the US Open.

But it had been hard to separate the two after the first five games of the first set, with Federer leading 3-2 but after that the Swiss streaked away to a 6-3 victory.

The second got off to much a similar start as Henman battled but Federer proved too strong to take the set 6-3.

It was a ninth title of the year for the Swiss, who now leads his career head to

head with the Briton 7-6.

"I was surprised because I had jet-lag," Federer said. "To always keep winning is a very difficult thing to do. To come here right away and win the tournament is fantastic."

Playing for the first time in Japan, and his first tournament since winning last month's US Open, Federer improved his finals record to 42 wins from 55 matches and his 2006 win-loss ratio to 77-5.

Henman, in his first final since losing to Federer at Indian Wells in March 2004 won the last of his 11 career titles at the Paris Masters in November 2003.