When Roger Federer arrived at Flushing Meadows for the 2005 US Open to defend the title that he had won 12 months earlier, there was an air of invincibility surrounding a man who was beginning to suggest that he could become the greatest of all time.
While the Swiss had only emerged victorious at one of the previous three majors during that year, aside from a loss to Richard Gasquet on clay in Monte Carlo, he had won every other match that he had played. His record stood at 64 wins from 67 contests for 2005, while he had put together a run of 23 successive victories on hard courts.
The then-24-year-old had an aura about him and he blitzed his way through his opening five matches for the loss of just one tie-break set to progress through to a semi-final showdown against Lleyton Hewitt, who had twice overturned a two-sets-to-one deficit to reach the last four, but it was Federer who prevailed through to a second successive final.
Standing in his way of a successful defence of his title was Andre Agassi, who was at the forefront of one of the most remarkable performances for a decade. At the age of 35, the legendary American battled past Ivo Karlovic and a youthful Tomas Berdych before having to endure three five-set thrillers in succession to reach his sixth final in New York.
After he had withstood a fightback from Xavier Malisse, the eight-time major champion came from two sets down to beat compatriot James Blake over the distance before fellow American Robby Ginepri couldn't capitalise on Agassi's exhausting time on court and he too lost in five sets.
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These two giants of the game had previously met 10 times, with Federer holding a 7-3 advantage, but this match was seen as two eras going toe-to-toe for possibly the last time and there was much anticipation in the capacity crowd on Arthur Ashe Stadium that they were about to witness something special.
Agassi's appearance in the final made him the oldest finalist since Jimmy Connors in 1974, and after Federer quickly found his range in front of a pro-Agassi crowd, there were fears that the encounter could turn out to be a short-lived affair.
However, the veteran returned for the second set a man inspired by the occasion, and two breaks of the Federer serve had supporters on their feet. It was a special set from a player who had first won at Flushing Meadows in 1994, and when he broke again midway through the third, there was genuine expectation that his fairytale run could have an happy ending.
Federer found an immediate response, though, and despite missing out on three chances to break again in the closing stages of the set, he raced through a tie-break to move six games away from picking up a sixth major trophy from his last 10 appearances.
Losing that lead had taken much of the belief out of Agassi, and although he battled on valiantly in the midst of a Federer onslaught, the Swiss wrapped up a 6-3 2-6 7-6 6-1 victory in two hours and 19 minutes.
After their duel, Federer called his triumph "the most special" of his Grand Slam wins, describing his beaten opponent as "a living legend", and their clash in New York proved to be their last as Agassi called time on his glittering career after losing in the third round 12 months later.