• ATP Tour

Becker: Federer making all the right moves

ESPN staff
October 17, 2013
Roger Federer faces an anxious few weeks if he is to qualify for the World Tour Finals in London © Getty Images

Boris Becker has backed Roger Federer's decision to part from coach Paul Annacone and believes the Swiss still possesses drive and desire to return to top form.

Federer faces an anxious few weeks ahead of the ATP World Tour Finals at the O2 Arena in London, with his place at the tournament under threat after a sub-par season.

The 17-time grand slam champion will compete in Basle and Paris in a bid to secure his spot at the World Finals, but Becker is adamant Federer has shown the right attitude to correct his wayward form and has made a positive step in separating from his coach.

'"He could have walked off into the sunset with [coach] Paul but this move tells me that Roger still has the fire and the motivation,'" Becker told the Daily Mail. "'I am one of Roger's biggest fans and I don't like seeing him lose in the second or third round of the Slams, but as long as he wants to play it is up to him, he deserves that respect.

"He will know better than anyone that he was a better tennis player at 25 than now. I don't see him as a contender for No 1 but he is still very good on faster surfaces. I would not rule out him winning at the O2."

Federer admitted that he may have to rely on Andy Murray's withdrawal from the finals, but would prefer to qualify through winning matches. Murray will miss proceedings in London as he undergoes surgery on his back - a decision that Becker believes is a smart one.

"The timing of it is as perfect as it could be,' Becker said. "Let us hope he recovers physically and, assuming he does, I don't see any reason why he won't be competitive at the Australian Open."

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