Vintage Federer is Master once more


Tennis:  World number one Roger Federer beat Spain's David Ferrer 6-2 6-3 6-2 with a vintage display to win his fourth Masters Cup title today.

Federer's victory at the season-ending eight-man tournament put him level with Ilie Nastase and one behind the record of five titles held by Ivan Lendl and Pete Sampras.
"It's been a fantastic season," Federer told reporters, his black signature "RF" cap pulled low over his eyes. "It was a nice victory, proving to myself and the world that I can do it over and over again."
The Swiss, appearing in his fifth successive Masters Cup final, had never lost to Ferrer in seven previous matches and he simply had too much firepower again for the Spaniard.
Ferrer had been a revelation in his tournament debut, reaching the final with a perfect record but he quickly crumbled against Federer in the biggest match of his career.
Federer had been jolted into life in Shanghai after a stunning defeat by Chile's Fernando Gonzalez in his opening round-robin match.
But the warning signs were there for Ferrer following Federer's clinical 6-4 6-1 demolition of world number two Rafael Nadal in Saturday's semi-final.
The constant ringing of Swiss cow bells appeared to have a soporific effect on Ferrer, who never got going as Federer swept through the first set in 26 minutes.
Ferrer's resistance effectively collapsed in the second, a wild forehand leaving Federer in total control.
Ferrer never looked like emulating Argentine David Nalbandian's amazing fightback from two sets down against Federer in the 2005 final as the third set followed the same pattern.
The world number one continued to drill winners past his dazed opponent, breaking for 3-1 with a superb running forehand that was too hot for a lunging Ferrer to handle.
He put Ferrer out of his misery with another sizzling forehand pass after 98 minutes to capture his eighth title of the year and the 53rd of his career.
"I surprise myself at times obviously," smiled the 12-times grand slam champion after another successful season.
"Once I get on a roll it's so hard for my opponents to come back. I don't allow them."
Federer's victory earned him €800,000 - as well as a gleaming new Mercedes car - and took his prize money in 2007 to more than €5.8million.
Ferrer was almost lost for words afterwards.
"Roger is the best player in history," he said, sighing heavily. "You don't enjoy a beating like that. He can do it all. I'm not on the same level.
"But I'm happy because I had my best year. I'll finish at number five in the world. It's a surprise for me. For me the year was perfect."