Federer's emphatic statement at U.S. Open salvages deflated season

So close, yet so far. That was the theme of Roger Federer's season from the outset. But after a massive effort versus Andy Murray at the U.S. Open, the Swiss proved he is still a force to be reckoned with.

Updated: September 9, 2008, 11:14 AM ET
By Greg Garber | ESPN.com

NEW YORK -- He has been variously described as vulnerable, beatable and, in extreme cases, finished.

All season long, going back to the Australian Open, Roger Federer has taken it in and refused to make excuses. The mononucleosis virus that infested him is gone, but the effects clearly lingered well into the summer.

Something was missing: His elegant, well-oiled movement, the crackling volleys, the sizzle on his forehand, the scintillation of ...

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