Roger Federer lost his comeback match after two months away, falling 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 to Pablo Andujar in the second round of the Geneva Open on Tuesday. Federer’s first clay match in nearly two years kept him on the court for nearly two hours in only his second competition since the 2020 Australian Open. Two operations on his right knee have occurred in the last 15 months.
The top-seeded Federer forced a service break and led 4-2 in the final set before Andujar rallied. Federer survived two match points on his own serve, but the third ended with an errant forehand on the baseline. After winning, Andujar raised his hands to his head and exchanged an almost remorseful grin with Federer at the net. Federer, 39, and Andujar, 35, were playing each other on tour for the first time.
Federer watched a portion of the ATP Tour debut of possibly the finest potential in Swiss men’s tennis since his own breakthrough in the 1990s before taking the court. Stricker, the French Open junior winner from last year, is rated 419th. Cilic is rated 46th, having won his only Grand Slam singles championship in 2014.
The left-hander from Switzerland had nine aces and no double faults. He broke Cilic’s serve four times while only being broken twice. In the first round, 18-year-old Dominic Stephan Stricker defeated former US Open winner Marin Cilic 7-6 (5), 6-1, with Federer witnessing parts of the action. Stricker has previously worked out with Federer. Marton Fucsovics, the 40th-ranked player, defeated Swiss qualifier Henri Laaksonen 7-5, 7-5.