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Federer Downs Moodie at Japan Open

October 5, 2006

TOKYO (AP) _ Roger Federer cruised to a 6-2, 6-1 win over defending champion Wesley Moodie on Thursday to advance to the quarterfinals of the Japan Open.

Federer, the World No. 1, established control early, breaking Moodie to go up 4-2 in the first set and needed only 52 minutes to defeat the 13th-seeded South African.

``I was expecting a tough match,″ said Federer, who had five aces. ``I had trouble returning yesterday so I thought it would be tough today, but I served well and made some credible shots.″

Federer, playing in his first tournament since winning the U.S. Open, looked sluggish in his opening match on Wednesday against qualifier Viktor Troicki but was back to form against Moodie.

In the second set, he broke serve with a crosscourt backhand to take a 2-0 lead and closed out the match by winning the final three games.

Federer, who has won three majors this year, improved to 46-2 on hardcourts.

Moodie won the second game of the first set with three aces but couldn’t keep up with Federer after that.

``I knew his serve was big,″ said Federer. ``He hit two great serves and then got another ace, but I don’t remember his getting many more aces after that.″

In the quarterfinals Friday, Federer will face the winner of the match between Germany’s Alexander Waske and Takao Suzuki of Japan.

Rain played havoc with scheduled men’s and women’s play at the Ariake Colosseum, postponing nine singles matches until Friday.

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