Federer was a sentimental favorite, of course—and a huge betting favorite, boasting -910 pre-match odds—but he had only played three matches all year, and he just lost his only match on clay, in Geneva to Pablo Andujar.
In the end, it was Istomin's lack of top-tier form that showed. Having spend much of this season on the ATP Challenger Tour, he proved little match for Federer, who displayed little of the rust we saw in Geneva.
"I had multiple ways to win the point, which I didn't feel I had at all in Geneva," said the Swiss after his straight-sets win. "I think I'm finding match rhythm again."(For the full interview,click here.)