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Becker: Federer will be year-end champion

By Helen Chandler, CNN
Boris Becker says Roger Federer will win the ATP World Tour Finals in London.
Boris Becker says Roger Federer will win the ATP World Tour Finals in London.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Boris Becker picks Roger Federer to win the ATP World Tour Finals
  • Season-ending event takes place at the 02 Arena in London from 21-28 November
  • German said that Federer will not dominate tennis in the future because of Nadal and other top players
  • Three-time World Tour Finals champion added that Andy Murray has impressed so far on home soil
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London, England (CNN) -- Three-time ATP World Tour Finals champion Boris Becker predicted on Monday that world number two Roger Federer will win the season-ending contest between the men's top eight players, which takes place at the 02 Arena in London this week.

After winning the Australian Open in January, the 16-time Grand Slam champion has had a disappointing season by his usual standards, failing to reach the final stage of the three other majors.

But former world number one Becker has picked the Swiss to finish the year in style with victory at the event, and be crowned year-end champion.

Federer has already had one win over seventh-ranked David Ferrer in the round-robin competition, and will face Great Britain's Andy Murray on Tuesday and Sweden's Robin Soderling on Thursday, before potentially progressing to the semifinal stage.

"He is a proud man, he really wants to end the year on a high and wants to show [world number one Rafael] Nadal that he is still going to be around for next year -- so I actually pick him to win the tournament," the German, champion in1988, 1992 and 1995 told CNN's World Sport program.

"But it is very different to a Grand Slam here -- any match you play in could be a potential Grand Slam final so there are no easy matches."

The six-time major winner added that he did not expect Federer to dominate tennis in the way he has for the last few years, and could expect to be continually challenged by Spanish rival Nadal as well as the other top players.

"Nobody dominates like that for five or six years; that was unusual. The fact that there is competition is good for tennis and for the audience -- you want to see tough rivalries.

"Nadal has had one of the greatest years of tennis ever, winning three Grand Slams -- this man is amazing."

Becker also said that he was impressed so far by the performance of Murray -- who beat Soderling in straight sets in his opening match -- despite the pressure on the Scot's shoulders to win on home soil.

"I was surprised by the way he beat Soderling -- he played his best match in a while yesterday with the home crowd behind him. Andy played very well.

"Its more pressure for Murray playing here but you have got be able to handle the pressure to win."