Roger federer won't actually open his ATP tennis season until the 2017 Australian Open. However, he is participating in a non-ATP this week known as the Hopman Cup. Federer has been practicing lately at the event's venue in Perth to the delight of thousands of fans. On Monday, the Swiss Maestro will face 26-year old Daniel Evans, a British player on tour, in a singles match.

Federer should do well if he's not rusty

The match is certainly a favorable one for Federer. He is 1-0 against Evans, the two players having played in 2016 on the grass court surface. Federer defeated Evans in the third round of Wimbledon about six months ago in non-competitive straight sets, a match that did not feature a tiebreaker.

Furthermore, Dan Evans is on the smaller side when it comes to tour standards. The Brit, who is ranked 66th in the world, stands just 5'9" and Federer has commonly demolished players of similar height. David Ferrer, who is much more talented than Evans, is just 5'9" as well and Federer is 16-0 against the Spaniard. Federer also owned the vertically-challenged Olivier Rochus in their head-to-head series, going 8-0 against the now-retired Belgian. When significant height is taken out of the picture it can remove some power and net presence. Federer typically has no trouble figuring out how to find the holes in such players' defenses.

Accordingly, the match should be a dunk for Federer, but, if it doesn't go his way, then it should definitely be taken to mean that his lengthy absence from tour has brought some rust.

Federer has never dealt with an absence of this length and that does mean he is entering unknown territory. Furthermore, the Hopman Cup is just an exhibition so that does call into question whether he will put much at risk.

Live streaming and betting odds

For coverage of the event, live streaming is available with bet365 sportsbook.

The firm make Federer a heavy 1 to 8 favorite despite all of the time off in recent months. Evans comes in at 5 to 1, perhaps short odds for the task ahead. Both players are preparing for the Aussie later this month, a tournament that Federer is considered 16/1 to win with the same sportsbook.

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