Saturday, 15 December, 2018

Alexander Zverev looks to the future as ATP Finals begin

ATP Finals Preview- Novak Djokovic Nadal out of ATP Finals with abdominal injury Rafael Nadal pulled out of the season-ending
| 12 November, 2018, 09:57

Nishikori opens his tournament against world number three Roger Federer and admitted it would be tough after two recent losses against the Swiss.

After no breaks of serve in the first set, Nishikori double-faulted in the opener of the second, but Federer gifted the advantage straight back as his out-of-character display continued.

COMMUTERS on the London Underground were shocked on Friday night when they were joined by sporting royalty in Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic.

The 21-year-old plays his first round-robin match against Croatia's Marin Cilic on Monday and hopes to do better than last year when he went out in the group phase. However, Federer's prediction has been accurate and the outcome has disappointed his fans.

A semi-final win is worth $620,000 while the champion, if beaten en route to the title, will earn $1.2 million.

"It obviously affected me because I can't be in a group with Novak (Djokovic)", said Federer. I think we both did.

Anderson's groundstrokes were nearly as impressive as his serve, particularly in the first set, and drew a series of errors from Thiem in the fourth game, which resulted in the crucial break.


"I felt we both struggled throughout the first set", Federer said in afterward, nearly immediately after the match. He committed 34 unforced errors and he was tetchy, impatient and, quite simply, frustrated.

Federer is targeting a record-extending seventh title at the prestigious tournament but suggested that his pre-tournament practice, described as "a bit all over the place" due to playing at different venues may have been a factor.

"I think I've taken the towel once or twice this year, once in Acapulco and once in Washington when it was like 120 degrees and when it was 150 per cent humidity".

Anderson, the first South African to qualify for the tournament since Wayne Ferreira 23 years ago, did not make his first grand slam quarter-final until 2015 and has now reached two finals in as many seasons.

The fourth-seeded Anderson, who was runner-up at Wimbledon this year, was taken to deuce in his opening service game, but dropped only one more point on serve in the first set - and wasn't punished for taking just one of seven break point opportunities on Thiem's delivery.

More thanks to poor returning than good serving, neither man was able to create so much as a sniff of a break of serve in an error-strewn opening set, until Nishikori's backhand denied Federer two set points with the score at 6-5, 15-30.

"I think maybe we both had a bit of nerves, too, not knowing how to attack second serve".

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