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MELBOURNE - The tennis world's very own Dr Frankenstein - Roger Federer - is credited with creating one of the sport's greatest monsters, and the Swiss has no regrets about that at all - in fact he is eager to do so again.
Federer dominated the sport to such an extent between 2004 and 2007 that his every movement, every temporary weakness, every slight shadow of a hiccup was magnified out of all proportion and analysed to the nth degree.
"People like that quote," the world number two said yesterday of the "monster" reference he coined last year.
"You know, I like it too, because I'm happy I created that monster. I was very successful and still am, so I hope I can create it again."
Federer is seeking a fourth Australian Open crown and record-equalling 14th grand slam title at Melbourne Park and is only interested in looking forward, not backwards - at the world number one slot he ceded to Rafael Nadal last year.
"That's the way it is. It's a fact, right? I was a very proud man for a long time and still today about the record," he said of his four years atop the rankings.
"Today Rafa deserves it because he's hung in there for a long time. He could have lost his No 2 position for a long time against (Novak) Djokovic, so he deserves it. It's fine.
"To some degree everybody still expects me to win every match. But, well, I mean, it went overboard there for a while already back in 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2008.
"Every match I played, when I lost a set it was incredible. It was kind of just a bit exaggerated from everybody." - Reuters