So, this match panned out pretty much as I expected, a straight sets victory and with it a new open era record of 28 consecutive Grand Slam Quarter Finals. Roger went into the match with an 8-1 advantage in the head to head so even if you don’t follow Fed, you’d still be picking him as the winner and that’s exactly what happened.
Roger came out of the blocks fast again like he’s done all week, he broke a tentative looking Stan early on and from then on the first set was pretty much over. Set two followed the same pattern and despite Fed getting broken early in the third after a brief lapse, he hit back to take it 7-5 which was good to see.
The problem Wawrinka has against Fed is 2 fold – the fact he struggles with the amount of variety Roger brings to the court, and the fact I don’t think he genuinely believes he can beat Roger. It must be hard for Stans coach Peter Lundgren to reassure him he can, seen as though he coached Federer as a junior and knows how good he is. So he probably doesn’t believe Stan can either!
One thing that really impressed me in this match was Rogers ruthlessness on breakpoints, I think he converted 5 out 6, which is a really good stat, and testament to how will he was hitting the ball out there. Feds never been amazing at taking break points, it’s just his level was so consistently high that eventually he’d get the breakthrough, and of late he’s been creating chances, failing to take them which eventually leads to him losing the match. So far this tournament this hasn’t been the case, so hopefully it will continue.
In deafeating Wawrinka, Federers lined up a meeting with either David Ferrer or Gael Monfils. (They’re resuming today with Monfils up 2 sets to 1, but Ferrer up a break in the 4th) I can definitelty see that one going to five. Which makes Rogers job slightly easier as no doubt whoever wins will be rather tired. However, I don’t really see either of those 2 causing Fed many problems – Ferrer is consistent, but I don’t believe he has weapons in his armoury to trouble him, it’d need a poor match from Fed and a great one from Ferrer for him to win it. Monfils is similar, he does have good power on both wings, but he can never put it together to play a consistent match, that coupled with his mental weakness means Fed should be winning in straights.
Elsewhere, Nadal and Murray have continued on their cakewalk draws – Nadal beat Veic, an outsider who to be honest I’ve never heard of. And Murray got past Berrer despite injuring his ankle. There’s some doubt he will play his 4th round, but we’ll soon find out. Ever since I watched Murray burst onto the scene at Wimbledon and he ended up getting cramp I knew his body/fitness would be a problem for him. Ok so he’s worked very hard and put on lot of muslce – but he’s still not a naturally athletic guy in my opinion. He looks tired after any sort of long point and right now his conditioning just about brings him through. However, as he ages, I can see this causing real problems.
Djokovic got past what I can only describe as the human equivalent to the Maginot Line – Richard Gasquet. This guy has zero fight, even in front of his home crowd and against a red hot Djokovic he had no chance.
So really it looks like a Federer vs. Djokovic Semi, pre tournament I’d have had to say Djokovic in straight sets, but on Rogers recent form I think it could be a lot closer. Again, ultimately I believe it boils down to which Federer shows up – if the backhand stays solid, and he hits the forehand well, then he definitely has enough in the tank to dispatch Novak. But if Federror (a term coined by Ruans Federer Blog) shows up who after a 9 shot rally shanks a backhand into the tramlines, then its Novak going through to the final.