Roger Federer beats Serena Williams in battle of the tennis legends

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Federer lavished praise on the 23-time grand slam victor, saying the upcoming match will be something special.

Serena Williams scored her second singles win at this year's Hopman Cup, beating Belinda Bencic 4-6 6-4 6-3 in an hour and 40 minutes to level the overall score and set all eyes on the much expected mixed doubles clash.

A capacity crowd of 14,064 turned out for the tie, and they saw Federer and Bencic largely capitalise on the mixed doubles inexperience of Williams' teammate, Francis Tiafoe, to clinch the deciding rubber under the Fast4 format, 4-2, 4-3 (5/3). Competitors play a men's and women's singles match along with the mixed doubles match.

The 37-year-old Swiss is warming up for the Australian Open, which he has won for the last two years.

The Swiss looked a little off colour in the first set but a break at the death got the ball rolling and he thumped the American youngster 6-4 6-1 as he maintained his unbeaten start to the season.

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Veteran Roger Federer claimed a commanding 6-1, 6-1 victory over 23-year-old Cameron Norrie to earn Switzerland a first point. Federer beat Cameron Norrie, the British No 2, 6-1, 6-1 in 57 minutes as Switzerland defeated Great Britain 3-0.

"People talk about her serve so much and I see why it is such a wonderful serve because you just can't read it", Federer said.

The Hopman Cup includes a round-robin of two singles and a mixed doubles match between nations with two groups of four.

Federer said he had plenty of experience playing against women, going back to his days as a teenage tour hopeful in Switzerland.

"She's a great champion, you see how focused she is and I love that about her". Both, Serena and Roger, are arguably the best players in the WTA and ATP roster respectively.

Serving at 4-2, Serena fends off two break points and bringing the game home with an ace before a solid hold in the ninth game that sent her over the finish line and kept the U.S. in contention.

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"I'm happy in all aspects of my game that things were working - foot work, offensive play, serve, return - it was all there".

Switzerland lead Group B at the tournament, followed by Greece and Great Britain, with the United States bringing up the rear.

World No.3 Roger Federer has been left feeling reassured that his game is in good shape after opening his Hopman Cup campaign with a 6-1 6-1 demolition of Cameron Norrie.

Earlier this month, speaking in an interview with Teen Vogue, Serena said she simply "doesn't know" how she makes things work. Roger Federer has 20 titles, a mark he reached in 2018.

If Switzerland beats Greece on Thursday they will be through to the final, where they will defend the title they won a year ago.

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The pair posed together for a selfie after the match. Williams has called it a "dream come true", the BBC reports.