Roger Federer 'knew he was going to win' – Gilles Simon makes surprising French Open claim

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That is the view of French world No 29 Gilles Simon.

It is ten years since Federer won the French Open for the first time, beating Soderling 6–1 7–6 6–4.

In the three years prior, Federer was beaten in the final each time by Rafael Nadal.

But in 2009, the door was opened for Federer to finally win after Nadal lost to Soderling in the fourth round.

And despite a major scare against Tommy Haas in the fourth round and Juan Martin Del Potro in the semi-final, Federer came through to achieve the career slam of winning every Major.

This year, Federer will be back to play in Paris for the first time since 2015.

At this week’s Monte Carlo Masters, Simon was asked for his thoughts and recollections of Federer’s victory.

And the 34-year-old said Federer’s winning record over Soderling gave him the feeling that the Swiss was entering the final with high confidence of success.

“Well, when I was watching that final, I had the impression that he had already won even before actually playing the match,” Simon told reporters.

“And I think the day before, he sort of predicted that when he finished his match, when he was asked about the final against Robin, he said that that final with Robin was going to be great because he had great statistics against him.

“I had the impression that he knew he was going to win.

“Sometimes there are all the ingredients there, and it’s just a little something that makes you win.

“So I’m not sure whether it was out of his own conviction that he won against Tommy Haas, and then he was playing not very well and all of a sudden a great shot, and then he turned around the match. Then he started smiling.

“And then he won against Del Potro and he won. So the final itself I had the impression that it was somehow sort of obvious.

“This is what I mean when I say that I had the impression that he had won the final before actually playing the final.”

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