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Roger Federer plays idol Rod Laver

Date

Sam Lienert

Roger Federer and Rod Laver on Wednesday night.

Roger Federer and Rod Laver on Wednesday night. Photo: Getty Images

Roger Federer traded shots with Australian legend Rod Laver on Wednesday night then showed he hasn't given up on making more tennis history of his own.

Federer's brief hitting session with 75-year-old Laver - the only man to have won all four grand slam tournaments in a calendar year twice - on the Melbourne Park court named in the Australian's honour clearly meant a lot to the Swiss great.

''The racquet feels a little heavy right now, I must say,'' he said as he rallied with Laver.

He then won an exhibition match with French world No.10 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-7(5-7), 6-3, 7-5.

Federer came from a break down in the final set, although he had to serve twice for the match to clinch it, indicating there were some nerves despite the clash, part of a charity fundraiser, being played in a casual atmosphere. Federer's win will give the 32-year-old winner of 17 grand slam titles a confidence boost ahead of his Australian Open campaign.

In Federer's most recent previous meeting with Tsonga, the Frenchman downed him in straight sets in the quarter-finals of last year's French Open.

Since then, Federer's streak of 36 straight grand slam quarter-final appearances or better ended with a second-round exit at Wimbledon, followed by a fourth-round loss at the US Open.

AAP

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