Tennis: Federer aims to bounce back on grass, starting this week in Halle

HALLE, Germany (AFP) - Roger Federer is hoping to kick-start his tennis season on the Halle grass this week as he goes in search of a morale-boosting first tournament success this season.

The 31-year-old top seed has not won a single trophy this season but is still the all-time most successful player in the Halle ATP tournament's 20-year history.

He won it for the first of five times in 2003, the same year he landed his first Wimbledon title.

"I would like to lift my first trophy of the season in Halle... it would give me a confidence boost," said the Swiss.

Federer once owned the Halle tournament, winning it four years in a row before he withdrew due to fatigue in 2007.

He won again in 2008, his fifth success, but his two appearances since then have seen him beaten in the final both times, by Lleyton Hewitt in 2010 and Tommy Haas last year.

Federer is slated to face Haas in the semi-finals if all goes to plan while the pair will team up in the doubles.

The world No.3's surprise quarter-final exit at Roland Garros last week to France's Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, is not playing on Federer's mind.

"Paris has little influence on the way to play in Halle or Wimbledon," he said before insisting that "the second half of the season will be better than the first".

Since winning his first ATP tour title in Milan in February 2001, Federer has never had to wait so long to break his trophy duck in any individual year.

The last time he almost went this long was in 2009 when he took until mid-May to win his first trophy, beating Rafael Nadal in the clay Madrid Masters final.

However, that year he went on to win Roland Garros for the first and only time, as well as a sixth Wimbledon crown, which he has since added to with a seventh.

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