Andy Murray’s destruction of Roger Federer in last week’s Shanghai Masters has obviously struck a chord with the Swiss star.
Federer has had a poor season by his standards, although a grand slam victory and a tour win would keep most pro’s happy, but the world number two is targeting a strong finish to the season in the four tournaments which he is entered.
“I’m certainly not yearning for the year to be over, I’m very positive for the rest of the season,” said Federer.
Novak Djokovic relinquished the world number two spot after Federer reached the final in Shanghai, but Federer says that’s not important, what is important is being world number one.
“It’s not that important to be two, three or four,” he said, “for me it’s either number one in the world or everything else.
Federer will be making appearances in Switzerland, France and London in November, but is targeting a start to his winning run in Stockholm this week where he is the standout entrant.
The Swiss star opens his tournament in the second round, having obtained a bye in the first round, and will face American Taylor Dent on Thursday morning in a match he is the overwhelming 1/50 favourite to win.
The two players have only met once before, in Miami in 2009 where Federer emerged victorious in straight sets – Federer is 1/10 to win in straight sets on Thursday.
Robin Soderling is also in action tomorrow and is 1/7 to beat Benjamin Becker, whom he beat in this event in 2008.
Ivan Ljubicic faces Arnaud Clement and a little value can be found in backing Ljubicic, 2/7 to beat a man who he hasn’t lost to on the last nine occasions.
If the draw goes the way of the seeds, Federer and Soderling should meet in the final. See the full IF Stockholm Open betting odds market here.