A third Masters 1000 semi final of 2017 awaits the GOAT as he put in an aggressive performance to outclass Roberto Bautista Agut 6-4, 6-4 in 68 minutes at the Coupe Rogers in Montreal.
It was his seventh straight win over the road running Spaniard and a much-improved level from yesterday saw him hit 24 winners and win 20 of 26 points at the net to prevent Agut from finding the rhythm he requires from the baseline. The wins sees him set up a tie with surprise semi finalist Robin Haase, who's making an appearance at this stage of a Masters 1000 for the first time.
Quick Match Recap
Federer won the toss and elected to receive. Agut then held to 30 for a 1-0 lead. Roger matched that to level at 1-1. Agut just dropped the one point in his next two service games but in game seven Roger started to make some inroads on the return and although the Spaniard held he couldn't do so again at 4-4, double faulting on break point to give Roger a 5-4 lead which he consolidated to love to take the first set.
Into set 2 and with Agut looking to shrug off the disappointment of losing the first things got a whole lot worse for him as he was broken to 30. At 30-15 it looked like Roger might coast but he lost three points in a row to give the break back. A bit of a life line for Agut but he couldn't get himself in front on the scoreboard, sending a lob long to fall 1-2 behind. This time the Swiss consolidated for 3-1 and the one break proved decisive as he sealed it 6-4 to move into the semi finals.
|Roberto Bautista-Agut||Roger Federer|
|First Serve Percent||64% (37/58)||51% (26/51)|
|1st Serve Points Won||65% (24/37)||81% (21/26)|
|2nd Serve Points Won||57% (12/21)||72% (18/25)|
|Break Points Saved||50% (3/6)||67% (2/3)|
|Service Games Played||10||10|
|1st Serve Return Points Won||19% (5/26)||35% (13/37)|
|2nd Serve Return Points Won||28% (7/25)||43% (9/21)|
|Break Points Converted||33% (1/3)||50% (3/6)|
|Return Games Played||10||10|
|Net Points Won||50% (2/4)||77% (20/26)|
|Total Service Points Won||62% (36/58)||76% (39/51)|
|Total Return Points Won||24% (12/51)||38% (22/58)|
|Total Points Won||44% (48/109)||56% (61/109)|
Shot of the Match
Thoughts on the Match
It pays off playing aggressively here in Montreal, plus I feel comfortable at net, so why not spend some time there instead of slugging it out from the baseline. I think I did a good job again, even though it was tough to control the ball. I got some decent rhythm going. Yesterday, I struggled against [David] Ferrer early on, so today was better. I was more committed and a step further in, adjusting my position slightly realising the ball does fly a lot.
Good win here from Fed who played a much more attractive brand of tennis than we saw vs. Ferrer. Lots of net forays, heavy groundstrokes and he was able to suffocate Agut with constant pressure to come through unscathed. Nice use of the body serve to set up some half court balls as well and he was looking to get on offence at every opportunity. No rallying which Agut thrives from so just a solid game plan to get it done in what Roger has described as fast and tricky conditions.
As for Agut, he did pretty well in the opening games on serve, dropping just a handful of points but once it got to the business end Roger upped his aggression and asked Agut to come up with shots under pressure. The Spaniard is at his best when he's hitting ball after ball from the baseline but when asked to come up with a pass or do something extra with the ball he was found wanting.
Predictions vs. Haase
Next up is the Flying Dutchman Robin Haase who defeated Diego Schwartzman in three sets. Haase took out Dimitrov in the earlier round too and he looks to be playing some decent stuff. I don't see many of his matches but I do remember when he should have taken out Murray at the US Open when up two sets to love 🙂 so I know he's a bit of a shotmaker but can blow very hot and cold. Based on that I don't think he's really got the mettle to trouble Federer. He'll no doubt play some nice points but I think Roger comes through in 2 sets.
What did you guys think of today's match? Let me know in the comments.