ATP Masters 1000Indian WellsRoger Federer

Federer Sees Off Sock To Make Indian Wells Final

Roger Federer will have a chance for a record-equalling five titles in Indian Wells tomorrow after defeating Jack Sock 6-1 7-6(4) to set up an all Swiss showdown with Stan Wawrinka in Sunday's showpiece.

The win sees Roger make his 138th final on the ATP World Tour and he'll be vying for his 90th tour-level title. Should he take it, he'll be the oldest Indian Wells champion since Jimmy Connors won in 1984 at 31 years and five months old.

Quick Match Recap

Federer Indian Wells Semi Final 2017

Federer won the toss and elected to serve. He held to 30 before Sock levelled. Another hold put the Swiss 2-1 up, and in game four he broke through, creating 0-30 on Sock's serve to then see the American miss a smash that was right in the sun and then double fault.

The break was consolidated for 4-1, and a sweet backhand return at deuce in Sock's service game helped Federer break again for 5-1, and he went on to take the opener 6-1.

Sock had looked flat in the first set, but after taking some tablets at an earlier changeover he came out with some purpose in the second, serving big to hold for a 1-0 lead. Roger levelled to love, and the set continued to go on serve. In game seven the Swiss fashioned the first break point of the set, but Sock produced some high quality serves to hold.

The American then had his best moments in the match, making deuce on Federer's serve to apply some pressure and holding comfortably to make Federer hold to force a tiebreak.

Force the breaker he did, and although Sock went up an early mini-break, Roger hit back, taking advantage of some backhand errors to recoup it and take it 7-4 to move into the final.

Match Stats

  Jack Sock Roger Federer
Aces 4 8
Double Faults 2 2
First Serve Percent 59% (35/59) 53% (33/62)
1st Serve Points Won 80% (28/35) 82% (27/33)
2nd Serve Points Won 33% (8/24) 66% (19/29)
Break Points Saved 33% (1/3) 0% (0/0)
Service Games Played 9 10
1st Serve Return Points Won 18% (6/33) 20% (7/35)
2nd Serve Return Points Won 34% (10/29) 67% (16/24)
Break Points Converted 0% (0/0) 67% (2/3)
Return Games Played 10 9
Winners 16 27
Unforced Errors 13 14
Total Service Points Won 61% (36/59) 74% (46/62)
Total Return Points Won 26% (16/62) 39% (23/59)
Total Points Won 43% (52/121) 57% (69/121)
SABR 0 0


Thoughts on the Match

Federer Defeat Sock Indian Wells 2017

Good win here again from Roger who played a very solid match. It's always tough to know what to expect when a player comes in after a walkover but Roger started in style, taking advantage of a sluggish looking Sock (who'd played four three-set matches this week) to win the first set in the blink of an eye.

The second was obviously much closer like the scoreline suggests and Roger seemed to struggle a bit on the return as Sock knuckled down. Despite that, you always felt like he had more in the tank if needed. So while it was close on the scoreboard had he somehow lost the tie breaker (which wasn't unthinkable as Sock had won 8 out 9 so far this year) I think he'd have been able to zap the energy out of Sock's leg in a third set who looked jaded on the last few points of the match.

So overall a pretty good match, not much energy expended which could be important tomorrow and just enough strife in the second set to test him out a little.

Predictions vs. Wawrinka

Fed Stan AO 2017

Next up is Stan The Man who defeated Carreno Busta in the earlier match in routine fashion.

Stan's had some tough battles this week with Nishioka and Thiem but he's come through, and that makes him very dangerous. Whenever Stan wins a match he could easily have lost he's invariably winning the whole thing. We saw it at the US Open with Dan Evans and combine that with simple how hard he hits the ball then he has a decent shot tomorrow.

Roger, of course, dominates the H2H and has won all their hard court matches, so he's my favourite going in. It always used to feel a bit like Master vs. Apprentice when these two met, but Stan is now a real force and has arguably been the 2nd best player in the world over the last three years, so I'm expecting a three setter.

I'll pick Roger in three, bit of a lottery in a BO3 sometimes but if Roger can stay offensive and vary the direction of his groundstrokes to keep Stan off balance who isn't the best mover, I like his chances.

What do you guys think? Any predictions?


Huge fan of Roger Federer. I watch all his matches from Grand Slam level right down to ATP 250. When I'm not watching or writing about tennis I play regularly myself and have a keen interest in tactics, equipment and technicalties of the sport.

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      1. Nah, I know you are from England. I was asking muser.

        BTW, you remind me of Iceland-England 2-1 in the Euro…
        I watched that match and was surprised. I was as well very happy for the Icelanders because they deserved it.
        I just hope Iceland will qualify for WC 2018 because their ‘Huh’ chant is awesome.

      2. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ Jonathan
        Vik, not quite from Iceland…But I love that country as well!

  1. “Why I was wrong to suggest Roger Federer is mortal after all” πŸ™‚

    “…Not even Stan Wawrinka, supposedly the man with the world’s best single-armed backhand, rips his service returns with such ambition. β€œIt’s like the birth of a new great shot in the game,” breathed the Sky commentator Peter Fleming, with the excitement of a naturalist stumbling over an unclassified beetle.

    How is Federer able to learn new tricks at 35 – an age at which every other modern giant, with the partial exception of Andre Agassi, has crumbled or quit?….”

    1. “…..we are entitled to ask: have we reached peak Federer? Is the 2017 model better than the mid-Noughties version who regularly won three slams in a season?

      Whatever the answer, it’s an intriguing debate. In the meantime, I’ve learned my lesson. I won’t be writing Federer off again….”
      Simon Briggs Tennis Correspondent TELEGRAPH

      1. Ah yes, Briggs conveniently forgetting the times *since* 2011 when he’s written Roger off. Wonder how long that will last? πŸ™‚

      1. Jonathan, I feel that Roger is as good as he was between 04 and 07, if not better technically. The difference is that while he played like that in God’ mode year in year out in 04-07 years it is a bit unknown as for how long Roger is able to play like this now with his new BH and BH returns. In particular, it will be interesting to see if Roger plays like this when he meets up Novack or Andy again.

      2. If you watch his matches from 04 to 07 he’s a way better player. His backhand are serve are better now. But his forehand and movement are on another level back then and they make all the difference. Look how he constructs points and hit his forehand, he’s not as good a mover now and that’s such a big chunk of the game.

  2. Fedexpress still rolling to the Swiss Wells final, bit like PT thanks for the fast writeup as I missed the match! Go Fed

      1. Ok time hated missing it live but just doing something else fundraiser Cycle related, so recorded it. Thanks for the Stan inclusion too.
        The players for Miami dropping like flies Muzz , Novak …is the clay calling?

  3. It’s very hard to make the argument that Stan has been the 2nd best player over the last 2 years.
    Murray and Djokovic take the two spots hands down.
    Federer, despite a horrid 2016 is my number 3 between 2015-2017.

    1. Stan has won 3 slams. Murray 2. Murray 5 M1000, Stan 1. I think I would actually take Stan’s performances, he’s been less consistent but his highs have been higher for me.

  4. Up all night, Jonathan? I say Fed in 2 if he serves well. Stan scraped through a lot of matches so even more dangerous.
    When is the Miami draw out? And now to wash the floors.

  5. it’s a typical Fed’s match. Fed is concentrate and brillant in the first set and then dropped his level in the second. At the same time, the opponent seize the chance and upped his level. Luckily, sock is not a very tough opponent and the audience and net is in the fed’s side. Roger just passed the test.
    The final is coming and Stan is standing the opposite. I cant’t help thinking the final in Monte Carlo where Roger lose. Roger was brilliant in the first and dipped in the second then lost the tiebreak in the second. In the deciding set, Stan is all the way and Roger just wilted.
    I am worried about the final. Roger’s first serve percentage is quite low in this whole week and it’s not enough for Wawa.
    Also, the court is much slower than last year at 27.3 (last year 30.0). I remember this year’s AO Rod laver is 40plus. Everything favors WaWa.
    Any idea about final?

    1. It will be tough but I think Fed can win it. His serve % isn’t pulling up trees but yet to be broken and only faced 1 break point? (Not sure if that’s right on the break points and cba checking) but those are pretty good numbers.

      Stan is not a great mover so if Fed is offensive and keeps him off balance he prob wins. If Stan is crushing it and Fed scrambling then Stan prob wins. Will prob boil down to a few games here and there, Stan usually the more likely to disengage and throw in a poor service game.

      1. Thanks Jonathan. Novak just officially pull it of Miami which leaves this year’s Miami a bit of dismal and weird.
        The big name remaining on the field is Nadal, Del Po and Roger. I am dreaming big now: back to back win.What do you think of the possibility?
        If Roger do attend the Miami, there’s high chance that he will meet Rafa in quarter and afterwards. What do you see his winning chance?
        At this stage, I hope Roger to take this chance and Grad Biebert’s No.1theory works in my mind again( it’s not mission impossible right?hahahahahaha…….)

    2. Fed didn’t play poorly in the second set – Sock just raised his level and focused better on his service games. Fed won the first 6-1 in part because he was great but Sock being poor played a role in that as well.

      1. Agree that Sock played poor in the first and upped his level in the second. But I still feel Roger dropped his level(maybe his concentration dropped) and played loose in some of points.
        Anyway, he did achieve the straight win as everyone expected and now we are waiting for FediStan. Let’s hope Roger is in full flight and serves lights our

  6. Has Stan actually lost a final in the past few years? The court condition will suit him more right? I wasn’t expecting another final so soon tbh so win or lose I don’t really mind. Year still young of course but Fed is comfortably leading the Race πŸ™‚

    And wtf both Murray and Djoker withdrew from Miami?? Seemingly from the same injury? Is it some sort of curse or what?

    1. Very good point about Stan. Been imperious in finals.

      I guess court does suit Stan ye, but first time he’s ever made semis or final here so prob not his favourite conditions.

      1. Murray and Djoker are both INJURED… πŸ™‚

        Maybe it’s the Federer curse, notice how strong he is this year… πŸ˜‰

    2. Yes, Stan did lose the St. Petersburg final to Sascha Zverev in 2016, actually quite surprisingly soon after his US Open win.

  7. Roger in 2 if he serves well and wins the first set. The win should move him ahead of Dull into 6th rank. Miami should move him back to top 4 where he belongs. Stan will give him a tougher match than sock. Roger is playing great and his confidence and resolve should win him the 90th.

  8. Every time I tuned into the radio commentary, Roger seemed either to be netting balls or hitting them out! Plus a still abnormally low first-serve percentage. He’ll need to do better than that against Stan if he’s to win.

  9. Thanks for quick turnaround Jon, Stan is a tough customer. Roger has to keep him at arms length with good serves and fast pace tennis. In this condition, it favors Stan more however Roger has more in his arsenal. Its going to be a close match. Lets do this Roger!

  10. Djokovic & Murray ‘elbow’ed out.

    Nick Kyrgios ‘bowel’led out

    Jack ‘sock’ed out

    Will Stan be down on his knees today ?

    Only Fedliness !!!

  11. Jonathan, agree with all your points, excellent analysis as usual. For today’s final, I feel that Roger should be able to take Stan down in two straight sets. What is at stake is that whose one-handed BH is the best! Although we’ve already seen that at AO17, this is the chance to put any lingering doubt away! Also it is a bit shocking to realise that Roger’s last Master win was almost 18 months ago and hence, please, Roger, do what your dad told you – ‘take the title, damnit’. πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ .
    Allez Roger!

    1. Well Stan’s backhand is far better so if that’s the battle Stan wins πŸ˜‰

      I think key for Fed is if he can keep Stan having to move around, if he’s off balance he isn’t hitting monsters and Fed takes control.

  12. Gosh!

    The peRFect gift ever for us Fed fans and tennis fans in general!

    What a match, what a result and What a 2017!

    Simply Amazing

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