- Associated Press - Tuesday, November 9, 2010

PARIS (AP) - Roger Federer believes a shortened ATP Tour season would benefit players and tournament organizers.

Federer, who is competing at the Paris Masters this week, said Tuesday the schedule has improved since he started on the tour 12 years ago. But the 16-time Grand Slam winner believes a longer offseason would benefit both groups.

The ATP board of directors will meet during the World Tour Finals in London on Nov. 21 to discuss the calendar, and will consider proposals to shorten the season by two or three weeks.

“Because four weeks is just not an offseason, really,” Federer said. “Six weeks I think is much better. Already at least you can take two weeks off, practice for four weeks, which is a lot for us in our world.

“I just think it’s time to shift back a bit and to get a proper offseason.”

The ATP season lasts 11 months. Several top players, including top-ranked Rafael Nadal and No. 8 Andy Roddick, recently spoke in favor of a shorter season.

“I hope tournaments understand it’s in their best interest as well, I think,” Federer said. “So it seems like we are working together on this issue, and we’ll see what’s going to come out at the end of the year.”

Federer won the Australian Open in January before his run of 23 consecutive Grand Slam semifinals ended with a loss to Robin Soderling in the French Open quarterfinals. He missed his first Wimbledon final since 2002 and lost to Novak Djokovic in the semifinals of the U.S. Open.

On Sunday, he won his 65th title in his home tournament at the Swiss Indoors.

Federer has never advanced past the quarterfinals at the Paris Masters. He hopes to improve that record this week.

“This has been by far my worst Masters 1000 tournament, so I hope I can do well this year,” the second-ranked Federer said. “I’ve always tried to come here and do really well.

“Quarters is just not good enough for me.”

Federer opens against Richard Gasquet on Wednesday.

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