Roger Federer returns the ball to Milos Raonic during the final of the ATP Mercedes Cup in Stuttgart, Sunday June 17, 2018. (Marijan Murat/dpa via AP)

Federer beats Raonic for Stuttgart title, his 18th on grass

June 17, 2018 - 8:58 am

STUTTGART, Germany (AP) — Roger Federer defeated Milos Raonic 6-4, 7-6 (3) to mark his return from three months off with the Stuttgart Open title on Sunday.

The Swiss great, who is assured of reclaiming the No. 1 ranking from Rafael Nadal on Monday, broke at 1-1 in the opening set and held his nerve in the second, where Raonic double-faulted.

Federer skipped the entire clay-court season for the second year in a row, but he wrapped up his 18th grass-court title in 1 hour and 18 minutes - his 98th title overall and third of the season after victories at the Australian Open and World Tennis Tournament in Rotterdam.

It extends his grass-court winning streak to 16 matches including his titles at Halle and Wimbledon last year.

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