Photos by Nida Alibhai
(February 23, 2015) DUBAI, UAE – No. 2 Roger Federer told media in Dubai after his first round 6-3, 6-1 win over Mikhail Youzhny, that he will be taking a pass on playing Davis Cup this year.
Federer and teammate Stan Wawrinka led Switzerland to its first Davis Cup title in 2014. Switzerland will face Belgium in the first round of the World Group March 6-8.
Federer said that it wasn’t a difficult decision for him and noted that by finally winning it he can do what he pleases.
“It’s been a big burden for me throughout my career and one of the things that have caused more difficulties in my life than many other things, I must say,” Federer said to press.
“I always feel there is so much guilt put on you from the federation or from the ITF more so than anybody else. So I’m happy I was able to finally tick that off and do it altogether.”
Federer improved his record against Youzhny to 16-0 in his first round 56 minute win.
Fifth seed and world No. 14 Ernests Gulbis is still winless in 2015. He fell to Denis Istomin 7-5, 6-2.
RESULTS – MONDAY, 23 FEBRUARY 2015
Singles – First Round
 R. Federer (SUI) d M. Youzhny (RUS) 63 61
D. Istomin (UZB) d  E. Gulbis (LAT) 75 62
A. Golubev (KAZ) d [Q] F. Martin (FRA) 75 64
J. Sousa (POR) d [WC] J. McGee (IRL) 61 62
R. Gasquet (FRA) d A. Seppi (ITA) 64 67(1) 64
Doubles – First Round
 R. Bopanna (IND) / D. Nestor (CAN) d [WC] L. Djere (SRB) / N. Djokovic (SRB) 62 75
D. Inglot (GBR) / F. Mergea (ROU) d F. Lopez (ESP) / F. Verdasco (ESP) 76(3) 76(5)
SCHEDULE – TUESDAY, 24 FEBRUARY 2015
CENTRE COURT start 2:00 pm
 T. Berdych (CZE) vs J. Chardy (FRA)
Not Before 4:00 pm
G. Muller (LUX) vs  A. Murray (GBR)
Not Before 7:00 pm
 N. Djokovic (SRB) vs V. Pospisil (CAN)
F. Verdasco (ESP) vs G. Garcia-Lopez (ESP)
COURT 1 start 2:00 pm
S. Stakhovsky (UKR) vs L. Rosol (CZE)
[Q] J. Ward (GBR) vs  F. Lopez (ESP)
Not Before 5:00 pm
Possible Court Change – [WC] R. Federer (SUI) / M. Lammer (SUI) vs  J. Rojer (NED) / H. Tecau (ROU)
R. Lindstedt (SWE) / M. Matkowski (POL) vs [LL] A. Golubev (KAZ) / D. Istomin (UZB)