Roger Continues Pursuit Of Title No. 100 Against Sascha
(ven., 16 nov. 2018)
Roger Federer started his 16th Nitto ATP Finals appearance in the worst possible way, losing in straight sets in round-robin play at the season finale for the first time. But the 37-year-old has
bounced back, winning his final two matches of group play to top Group Lleyton Hewitt and advance to the semi-finals for the 15th time.
“I've always tried to pace myself in a way, set up my schedule in a way that I would have something left in the tank, I would peak at this event,” Federer said. “I'm happy that this is another
week like this. Didn't look like it maybe 72 hours ago. But I was able to come back and play good tennis.”
The tournament is not over for the six-time champion, though. Federer has a stiff challenge awaiting him on Saturday in third seed Alexander Zverev, whom he beat in round-robin play at The O2 one
year ago. And while the German was unable to advance to the last four on debut in 2017, Zverev is eager to push even further this time.
“It's obviously great getting to the semi-finals,” Zverev said. “But the tournament isn't over. I am in the semi-finals. There are only good opponents left. There are only the best in the world.
I'm playing Roger tomorrow, which is going to be a very difficult, but hopefully very nice match. We'll see how far I can go.”
For his part, Federer knows that the work has just begun. While he has only missed out on reaching the last four at the season finale once, the Swiss has lost in the semi-finals four times. And
while Federer says he is trying not to let the weight of the milestone weigh on him, the second seed is now just two wins away from capturing his 100th tour-level title, becoming just the second
player to ever reach the feat (Jimmy Connors, 109).
View FedEx ATP Head2Head for the following match-ups at the Nitto ATP Finals and vote for the players you think will win!
Federer vs Zverev | Djokovic vs Anderson
[GROUP POLL]183[/GROUP POLL]
“I think it's just going to be hard to finish it. I'm happy I gave myself the opportunity. I'm happy that I'm raising my level of play throughout this week,” Federer said. “It's exciting to be in
this situation now, of course, no doubt.”
Federer leads his FedEx ATP Head2Head series against Zverev 3-2, but this will be their first meeting this year. Zverev is also no stranger to playing Federer on a big stage, defeating him in the
championship match at Montreal last year to capture his second ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title. As a 20-year-old, he also beat the Swiss two years ago in the semi-finals at Halle, where Federer
is now a nine-time champion.
Federer-Zverev FedEx ATP Head2Head Series (Federer leads 3-2)
Nitto ATP Finals
7-6(6), 5-7, 6-1
Gerry Weber Open
Gerry Weber Open
7-6(4), 5-7, 6-3
Internazionali BNL d'Italia
“Obviously it's going to be a very difficult match. I mean, him on this surface, indoor court, he's an unbelievable player. [I’ve] played him a few times in all different conditions, all
different surfaces,” Zverev said. “I'll prepare myself for a very tough match. I hope it will be a good match, as well.”
According to Infosys ATP Scores & Stats, both Federer and Zverev are inside the ATP World Tour’s Top 25 in all major serving categories: service games won, first-serve points won,
second-serve points won and aces. So expect any breaks of serve to prove critical in the match.
Comparing Federer & Zverev's Serving Stats In 2018 (Entering The Nitto ATP Finals)
Service Games Won
First-Serve Points Won
Second-Serve Points Won
Federer does well to hit his spots on serve so that he can not only win free points, but to put himself in the best position to dominate the rally from inside the court if his serve does come
back. Zverev pumped some serves that registered at more than 140 mph on Friday. So perhaps the key will be if Zverev could keep Federer from maintaining his court-positioning right on the
baseline once rallies begin, and could instead assert his authority with aggressive play.
“It should be a very good match, I think one that the fans will certainly enjoy. If Sascha serves like that, he could have a very good shot at winning. We all know what Roger does so well. He
serves incredibly well. It's definitely strength on strength,” said John Isner, who lost to Zverev on Friday. “I think it will be a very close match tomorrow between those two. You have to say
Roger is the favourite. He is ranked higher right now, had a little bit better year, but only slightly. As I said, I think it can be a very, very close match.”
The winner will face World No. 1 Novak Djokovic or fourth seed Kevin Anderson in Sunday’s championship match in the final ATP World Tour match of 2018.
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Herbert/Mahut Secure Group Win To Qualify For SFs
(Fri, 16 Nov 2018)
Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut won Group Knowles/Nestor with a 2-1 record at the Nitto ATP Finals by beating Mike Bryan and Jack Sock 6-2, 6-2 in 53 minutes on Friday.
The Frenchmen, who have qualified for the semi-finals for the first time in four appearances at The O2 in London, will next prepare to meet Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah on Saturday.
Bryan and Sock, who finish second in group play, will now face Group Llodra/Santoro winners Jamie Murray and Bruno Soares in the other semi-final.
Herbert and Mahut avenged their loss to Bryan and Sock at the recent Rolex Paris Masters by blitzing through the fifth-seeded Americans with two breaks of serve in each set – the fourth and
eighth games. The eighth-seeded Frenchmen won 25 of their 28 first-service points for their 22nd match win of the year.
Bryan and Sock, winners of the Wimbledon and US Open titles in 2018, finish with a 2-1 record in group play but must now regroup to face Murray and Soares on Saturday and improve their 18-6
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