Querrey's aces fail to trump Federer

Sam Querrey hit 10 aces in succession on the way to one of his best victories, against his fellow American James Blake in Indianapolis last year. The strapping Querrey unleashed more of his thunderbolts here at the French Open yesterday, including a 132mph second serve ace, but you had the impression that it would have taken a lightning strike to bring down his opponent. Roger Federer's 6-4, 6-4, 6-3 victory was more convincing than the scoreline suggested and gave the world No 1 a fine start to his attempt to become only the sixth man to win all four Grand Slam titles.

Federer will know as well as anyone that a victory over the world No 40 is not the moment to send for champagne, but was happy to have cleared his first hurdle here, particularly as rain disrupted play later in the day. "There's always a lot of pressure in the first round of the Slams," Federer said. "I was able to create a few opportunities for myself against his serve, which was good. I thought the match was fine."

It was not quite beauty against the beast, but nearly all the style – in fashion as well as tennis terms – was on one side of the net. Federer was decked out in a smart navy blue number and at the end of the match still gave the impression of a man who had just walked off the set of a photo-shoot, while Querrey's red shirt hung over his broad shoulders like a tarpaulin covering a container lorry.

At 6ft 6in and more than 14 stone, 20-year-old Querrey is a formidable presence on the court. He is not without talent, having won his first title earlier this year and shown a surprising liking for clay with victories in Monte Carlo last month over Richard Gasquet, Carlos Moya and Andreas Seppi.

Against the world's best player, however, there was a gap in class as wide as the nearby Bois de Boulogne. Federer moved around the court with his usual grace and speed and always looked likely to win any rally that lasted more than half a dozen strokes.

Querrey's only realistic chance was to go for his shots and hope that Federer would have trouble returning his serve. Plan A went well enough, but Plan B was in tatters from the moment Federer broke the American in the opening game. The world No 1 secured his fourth of five breaks, at 3-3 in the third set, in particularly contemptuous fashion, stepping in to take a first serve early and crack a blistering forehand winner down the line.

The United States may be the Davis Cup holders, but the fact that Querrey is the highest ranked of their next generation – Andy Roddick, Blake and Mardy Fish are the only Americans above him – leaves you wondering where their game is heading. The other US players in the top 100 are another man mountain, John Isner (No 82), 18-year-old Donald Young (83), who needs to prove that he can convert his junior promise into senior success, and Robby Ginepri (88), who has never properly built on his run to the 2005 US Open semi-finals.

France has 13 players in the top 100, but getting them on to court is another matter. Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, the French No 2, pulled out on Saturday with a knee injury, which was the same reason given by Gasquet when he withdrew shortly before his first match yesterday. The French No 1 did not endear himself to home fans when he refused to play a vital Davis Cup rubber in the United States recently, citing injury, and when the news of his latest complaint was relayed to spectators waiting to see him on Court Suzanne Lenglen it was greeted by boos.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
American singer, acclaimed actor of stage and screen, political activist and civil rights campaigner Paul Robeson (1898 - 1976), rehearses in relaxed mood at the piano.
filmSinger, actor, activist, athlete: Paul Robeson was a cultural giant. But prejudice and intolerance drove him to a miserable death. Now his story is to be told in film...
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Babysitter Katie and Paul have terse words in the park
tvReview: The strength of the writing keeps viewers glued to their seats even when they are confronted with the hard-hitting scenes
Life and Style
Make-up artists prepare contestants for last year’s Miss World, held in Budapest
fashion
Sport
England’s opening goalscorer Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain battles with Scotland’s Charlie Mulgrew
FootballEngland must learn to keep possession and dictate games before they are exposed by the likes of Germany and Brazil
Life and Style
life
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

US immigration: President Obama ready to press ahead with long-promised plan to overhaul 'broken system' - but will it get past a Republican-controlled Congress?

Immigration: Obama's final frontier

The President is ready to press ahead with the long-promised plan to overhaul America's 'broken system' - but will it get past a Republican-controlled Congress?
Travelling to work by scooter is faster than walking and less sweaty than cycling, so why aren’t we all doing it?

Scoot commute

Travelling to work by scooter is faster than walking and less sweaty than cycling, so why aren’t we all doing it?
Paul Robeson: The story of how an American icon was driven to death to be told in film

The Paul Robeson story

How an American icon was driven to death to be told in film
10 best satellite navigation systems

Never get lost again: 10 best satellite navigation systems

Keep your vehicle going in the right direction with a clever device
Paul Scholes column: England must learn to keep possession and dictate games before they are exposed by the likes of Germany and Brazil

Paul Scholes column

England must learn to keep possession and dictate games before they are exposed by the likes of Germany and Brazil
Synagogue attack: Fear unites both sides of Jerusalem as minister warns restoring quiet could take 'months'

Terror unites Jerusalem after synagogue attack

Rising violence and increased police patrols have left residents of all faiths looking over their shoulders
Medecins sans Frontieres: The Ebola crisis has them in the headlines, but their work goes far beyond West Africa

'How do you carry on? You have to...'

The Ebola crisis has Medecins sans Frontieres in the headlines, but their work goes far beyond West Africa
Isis extends its deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

Isis extends its deadly reach with suicide bombing in Kurdish capital

Residents in what was Iraq’s safest city fear an increase in jihadist attacks, reports Patrick Cockburn
Underwater photography competition winners 2014 - in pictures

'Mysterious and inviting' shot of diver wins photography competition

Stunning image of cenote in Mexico takes top prize
Sir John Major: Negative West End portrayals of politicians put people off voting

Sir John Major hits out at theatres

Negative West End portrayals of politicians put people off voting
Kicking Barbie's butt: How the growth of 3D printing enabled me to make an army of custom-made figurines

Kicking Barbie's butt

How the growth of 3D printing enabled toy-designer to make an army of custom-made figurines
Will Smith's children have made waves with a gloriously over-the-top interview, but will their music match their musings?

What are Jaden and Willow on about?

Will Smith's children have made waves with a gloriously over-the-top interview, but will their music match their musings?
Fridge gate: How George Osborne keeping his fridge padlocked shows a frosty side to shared spaces

Cold war

How George Osborne keeping his fridge padlocked shows a frosty side to shared spaces
Stocking fillers: 10 best loo books

Stocking fillers: 10 best loo books

From dogs in cars to online etiquette, while away a few minutes in peace with one of these humorous, original and occasionally educational tomes
Malky Mackay appointed Wigan manager: Three texts keep Scot’s rehabilitation on a knife-edge

Three texts keep Mackay’s rehabilitation on a knife-edge

New Wigan manager said all the right things - but until the FA’s verdict is delivered he is still on probation, says Ian Herbert