ATP • NITTO PREVIEW • ROGER FEDERER TO PLAY ZVEREV IN LONDON AT THE FABULOUS 02 ARENA

Written by: on 13th November 2017
Print This Post Print This Post
ATP World Tour Finals in London
ATP • NITTO PREVIEW • ROGER FEDERER TO PLAY ZVEREV IN LONDON AT THE FABULOUS 02 ARENA

epa06325644 Alexander Zverev of Germany returns the ball to Marin Cilic of Croatia during their Men's singles match at the ATP World Tour Finals tennis tournament at the O2 Arena in London, Britain, 12 November 2017. EPA-EFE/WILL OLIVER  |

Ricky’s preview and pick for the winners’ round-robin match in Group B: Federer vs. Zverev

 

By Ricky Dimon

 

Roger Federer and Alexander Zverev will be facing each other for the fifth time in their careers when they each try to remain undefeated in round-robin Group B at the Nitto ATP World Tour Finals on Tuesday night.

 

The head-to-head series is all tied up at two victories apiece, including one each in 2017. Federer cruised in the Gerry Weber Open final 6-1, 6-3 before Zverev took their only previous hard-court meeting 6-3, 6-4 in the Montreal final. Last season, Federer prevailed 6-3, 7-5 on the red clay of Rome only to see Zverev score a 7-6(4), 5-7, 6-3 upset in the Halle semis.

 

A back injury hobbled Federer during his Montreal loss to Zverev and also contributed to a difficult road at the U.S. Open, where he survived several tight matches before losing to Juan Martin Del Potro in the quarterfinals. It’s safe to say that the back is not an issue anymore. Federer is 11-0 since the U.S. Open with titles in Shanghai and Basel plus a 6-4, 7-6(4) defeat of Jack Sock on Sunday at the O2 Arena.

 

“I think we’re all going to start playing better every round that goes by,” Federer explained after beating Sock. “It’s just still early days in the tournament. (You) can’t expect to play your best against the best players in the world in that first match…. I think that’s the difficulty in a first round usually at any tournament. Here it’s amplified because it’s against a fellow top-10 player. It just makes things really, really difficult.”

 

It will be a fellow top-three player on the other side of the net on Tuesday. Zverev’s ascension to the top of tennis in 2017 was highlighted by Masters 1000 triumphs in Montreal and Rome, plus additional titles in Montpellier, Munich, and Washington, D.C. The 20-year-old slumped to the tune of an 8-7 record in his last seven events prior to London, but he picked up an impressive 6-4, 3-6, 6-4 victory over Marin Cilic on Sunday night.

 

Thus it is Zverev who actually has a better lifetime winning percentage than Federer at the year-end championship. Of course, his sample size is just a wee bit smaller. Whereas Zverev is 1-0, Federer owns a ridiculous 53-12 career record at this tournament with six titles.

 

“I think anyone beating Federer in this group [would have] a good chance of passing (to the semifinals),” Zverev commented. “But he’s the favorite, definitely, in all of the matches he plays. I played him a few times this year now…. All of them were great matches. Hopefully it can be another one.”

 

Given how well the German did to battle back from a break down in the third set against Cilic and how well he has fared against Federer in the past, another competitive one should be in the cards. But the 36-year-old will likely raise the level he produced against Sock and improve to 2-0 in Group B following a good test.

Pick: Federer in 3

 

Ricky contributes to 10sballs.com and also maintains his own tennis website, The Grandstand. You can follow him on twitter at @Dimonator.

 

Topics: , , , , , , ,





10sBalls Top Stories

In Case You Missed It

DRAWS & ORDER OF PLAY FROM THE GERRY WEBER OPEN & FEVER-TREE CHAMPIONSHIPS TENNIS thumbnail

DRAWS & ORDER OF PLAY FROM THE GERRY WEBER OPEN & FEVER-TREE CHAMPIONSHIPS TENNIS

Click here to keep up with the updated draws and schedule from the men's tennis in Halle, Germany & London, Great Britain.
ATP FEVER-TREE CHAMPIONSHIPS • QUALIFYING DRAW AND SATURDAY’S ORDER OF PLAY thumbnail

ATP FEVER-TREE CHAMPIONSHIPS • QUALIFYING DRAW AND SATURDAY’S ORDER OF PLAY

Click here to check out tomorrow's schedule of the qualifying players for the ATP Fever-Tree Championships tennis at the Queens Club.
THE PERFECT GIFT FOR ANY TENNIS PLAYER & FAN thumbnail

THE PERFECT GIFT FOR ANY TENNIS PLAYER & FAN

Are lefties more successful than right-handed players? Which player admits to smashing 70 rackets a year during his career? All these questions, and so many more, are answered in entertaining infographics in the new book YOU CANNOT BE SERIOUS!
RICKY’S PICKS FOR FEDERER VS. KYRGIOS IN BLOCKBUSTER SEMIFINAL SHOWDOWN IN STUTTGART thumbnail

RICKY’S PICKS FOR FEDERER VS. KYRGIOS IN BLOCKBUSTER SEMIFINAL SHOWDOWN IN STUTTGART

It's not his fault, of course, but Rafael Nadal reduced much of the clay-court swing to a snooze-fest. Roger Federer in all likelihood will do the same on grass. But for at least one day, tennis fans must bring out their popcorn.
DAN EVANS, JAY CLARKE AWARDED REMAINING FEVER-TREE TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS MAIN DRAW WILD CARDS; DEL POTRO WITHDRAWS thumbnail

DAN EVANS, JAY CLARKE AWARDED REMAINING FEVER-TREE TENNIS CHAMPIONSHIPS MAIN DRAW WILD CARDS; DEL POTRO WITHDRAWS

Dan Evans and Jay Clarke have been given wild cards into the main draw of the Fever-Tree Championships.