London, July 5 : Incumbent Wimbledon Champion Roger Federer believes that he is enjoying an incredible winning streak on grass, and insists that he will be the favourite against Spaniard Rafael Nadal, as he looks to land his sixth successive men's singles title at the event.
The world No 1 has lost 11 of his 17 clashes with the Spaniard, but has beaten him in the last two finals at the All England Club.
Federer has also pointed to his astonishing record at Wimbledon, with yesterday's straight sets semi-final victory over Marat Safin proving to be his 41st consecutive win.
Most amazingly of all is the fact that during this breathtaking run, Federer has dropped just seven sets.
After polishing off Safin in a 6-3 7-6 6-4 triumph, the Swiss star said: "I'm on an incredible winning streak on grass. First, someone has to break that before we can talk differently, about me not being the favourite. I have not had any problems throughout the Championship. It has been a perfect way to the final, but there's one match left," The Sun quoted Federer, as saying.
"And it's a huge thrill every time I get to another Wimbledon final. It should be an interesting match. Rafa has been playing consistently well and he had an amazing clay court streak. He has become good on all other surfaces. Rafa is a great competitor and he has a winning record over me. But I have played him so often on clay, which is why he has a head-to-head advantage," he added.
Nadal came close to beating Federer in last year's five-set final, the Majorcan won this year's Artois Championships and he has played well at this Wimbledon - particularly in his quarter-final hammering of Andy Murray.
"I think we always hope we can live up to the expectations, because we have had some good matches against each other. But it is hard to live up to them all the time," Federer said.
Federer is now unbeaten in 65 matches on grass.
Story first published: Saturday, July 5, 2008, 13:09 [IST]
Other articles published on Jul 5, 2008