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Federer breezes past Evans

Sky Sports logo Sky Sports 02-01-2017 skysports.com
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Roger Federer returned from a six-month absence to beat Dan Evans 6-3 6-4 in the Hopman Cup in Perth. 

The 35-year-old missed the second half of 2016 with knee and back injuries but showed little rust in giving Switzerland a 1-0 lead over Great Britain at the pairs event.

After a "special" standing ovation, Federer needed just over an hour to beat Evans, Britain's No 3, courtesy of a single break in each set.

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"The standing ovation coming in, it was very special. I'm here now enjoying and looking forward to the week of course," Federer said.

"You can't be more happy to return back on a Centre Court, taping your ankles, tying your shoes and walking out and getting that kind of welcome."

Britain's hopes of rallying to beat Switzerland were dashed a couple of hours later when Heather Watson also suffered a defeat.

Watson bounced back from losing a tight opening set against Belinda Bencic but was eventually beaten 7-5 3-6 6-2 as Switzerland secured victory.

A Watson win would have set up a mixed doubles decider in the Group A tie, the first of the event for both teams in a section that also includes pairings from France and Germany.

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