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Federer said his strong finish last season _ a 17-match winning streak that culminated in a record sixth title at the year-end championships in London _ has given him hope.

“You can definitely take confidence from the end of the year and sort of just carry it over because you’re in a good mindset,” Federer said. “You know, you just believe that you’re doing the right things on the court. You’re not second guessing yourself. From that standpoint, confidence is … it’s a huge part of our, you know, life sometimes as a tennis player.”

As for the chances of regaining the top ranking or winning another major this season, the 16-time Grand Slam champion said it was too early to make bold predictions. “You have to go step by step, and right now focus is on Doha, my first round. It’s a tough one against Davydenko,” Federer said.

“Then I do hope I can move on and defend my title here and then go to sort of Australia and make my move over there,” he added. “Then I have a lot coming up in February, as well, for me. So it’s going to be an interesting next two months for me because I will be playing a lot of tennis. So I hope that I will hold up well physically.”

Federer said there was no need for significant changes to his game because he has been playing well.

“I think the offseason has been too short to take any major, you know, change, anything crazy,” he said. “I mean, I have had what, 20 days of practice? I don’t think anybody can reinvent themselves within three weeks. Given three months, things can change a bit.”


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