Federer's dream: An Olympic gold

An Olympic gold has eluded the world No. 1 tennis player, but Roger Federer says he wants to turn around his poor form with a win in Beijing.

updated: August 07, 2008 08:07 IST
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Roger Federer says he is anticipating a "dream Olympics" that will help turn around his disappointing season by winning one of the few titles to elude him.

"For me it is really important over the next couple of weeks, starting here at the Olympics, going on to the US Open," he said in an interview.

"I still have plenty of tournaments to do well in, and I hope I can start here at the Olympics and fulfill my dream to win gold."

After failing to overcome arch-rival Rafael Nadal at the French Open, he then fell to the Spaniard in an epic five-set Wimbledon final before going out in the early rounds in Toronto and Cincinnati.

But he is feeling lucky in China, where he will carry the flag for Switzerland at the Olympics opening ceremony.

"I've had a lot of luck in China," said the Swiss ace, whose 27th birthday coincides with Friday's opening ceremony on August 8.

"I know eight is the lucky number here, maybe because my birthday and everything that has also brought me luck here in China, who knows."

Eight is considered lucky because the Chinese character 'ba' sounds similar to the word for luck, or 'fa'.

Because of this the Games opening ceremony has been slated to start at 8pm on the eighth day of the eighth month of the year 2008.

Federer gets to keep the world No 1 status he has owned for a record 235 weeks for the early part of the Games courtesy of Nadal's loss to Novak Djokovic in the semis of the Cincinnati Open.

Despite the fact that he will have to surrender it to Nadal on August 18, Federer said he does not feel any extra pressure here.

"Everyone has a chance. We'll see down the stretch who is going to have the best day, and I hope it's going to be me."

Federer was constantly pestered by fans and athletes in Athens and he got another taste of that yesterday night when he was mobbed by airport officials, and again today when volunteers hounded him for autographs.

"The volunteers struggled to hold themselves back, but it's part of the spirit so it's no problem," said Federer.