ATP Masters 1000Indian WellsRoger Federer

Federer Up and Running in Indian Wells

Routine match for the GOAT here as he defeated Diego Schwartzman 6-4 6-2 in 1 hour 2 minutes to book his spot in the third round. A very simple encounter from start to finish for Roger as Schwartzman doesn't have the artillery required to do any damage; a sub par serve and no dominating shot to force the issue. A poor man's Nishikori if you will.

Next up for the Swiss is Andreas Seppi who defeated Hanescu in straight sets and this gives Roger the chance to set the record straight after his loss at the Australian Open to the Italian earlier this year.

Quick Match Recap

Federer Schwartzman Indian Wells

Schwartzman won the toss and elected to serve holding to 30 before Roger levelled things in just 1 minute and 3 seconds. The speedy hold instantly put the pressure back on the Argentinian and he was broken to love before Roger consolidated to lead 3-1.

3 more break points came the way of the Swiss in game 5 but he couldn't convert as Schwartman held for 2-3. Another quick hold (1 min 11 seconds) followed and both players exchanged back to back holds before Roger served out the set 6-4 with little trouble.

Into set 2 and Fed had immediate chances to put the match to bed with 3 more break points but again failed to convert. At 1-1, 3 more break points came his way and this time he took advantage after a heavy hitting rally. That soon became 3-1 and after Schwartzman missed a sitter volley at deuce Fed broke again to lead 4-1. Despite Schwartzman's first serve only averaging 99mph and Roger attacking it at will he did manage to get one more game on the board but Fed closed it out easily, holding to 15 to record a 6-4 6-2 win.

Match Stats

  D. Schwartzman R. Federer
Aces 1 8
Double Faults 2 1
1st Serve % 55% 49%
1st Serve Points Won 19/32 (59%) 19/23 (83%)
2nd Serve Points Won 12/26 (46%) 17/24 (71%)
Break Points Saved 6/9 (67%) 0/0 (0%)
Service Games Played 9 9
1st Return Points Won 4/23 (17%) 13/32 (41%)
2nd Return Points Won 7/24 (29%) 14/26 (54%)
Break Points Won 0/0 (0%) 3/9 (33%)
Return Games Played 9 9
Winners 7 19
Unforced Errors 18 26
Net Points Won 4/6 13/14
Total Service Points Won 31/58 (53%) 36/47 (77%)
Total Return Points Won 11/47 (23%) 27/58 (47%)
Total Points Won 42/105 (40%) 63/105 (60%)

Thoughts on the Match

Federer Indian Wells 2nd Round Schwarzman

I actually thought I was moving well, I always have to adjust my game accordingly. Schwartzman can be tough. He can take time away from you and take charge from the baseline. I was happy I was trying at least. I was successful playing on my terms. There are certain things I can do better, but for a first round it's a good start.

A typical opening match here for Fed where the gulf in class between himself and his opponent is pretty huge. Schwartzman was playing his first ever Master's 1000 event and just doesn't have the weapons to really compete. At only 5ft 7″ he's at a real disadvantage and Roger attacked his serve pretty easily.

The only thing the Argentinian could really do was step into the court and take the ball as early as possible to give Roger no time; he managed it a couple of times with some flashy winners but he was starting 90% of rallies on the defensive and never had a chance to get on the front foot.

As for Roger I thought he played pretty good, hard to really analyse a match when he doesn't have to get out of first gear but he didn't face a break point, bossed most of the points and won 13 of 14 points at the net. We'll learn more once he plays Seppi who offers a bit more from the baseline than Schwartzman and also has a little bit more on the serve.

Predictions vs. Seppi

Federer Seppi

I'm happy to play him again, I was very disappointed with the performance I had in Australia. I know he can play well and can beat me. That's not the problem. It was the way I was hitting the ball. It was just a tough match overall and the match slipped away from me. I hope this time around it's going to go better for me. I will be prepared. There is no doubt about that. I'm happy I'm getting an opportunity to play him right away again.

Next up is Roger's Australian Open conqueror Andreas Seppi after he defeated Victor Hanescu in straight sets. Roger's match vs. Seppi in Australia was memorable for all the wrong reasons but I think he'll set the record straight in this one.

The loss was clearly an anomaly and Fed lost because he played pretty poorly; just a bit timid on the groundstrokes and Seppi took advantage. It was still pretty close even with Fed not performing and only an insane pass from Seppi got him out the tiebreak in the fourth set. If that sailed long Fed likely got it done in 5 and then who knows how the Australian Open would have panned out.

I'll pick Federer to win in straights, pretty sure he will go on the offensive and just overwhelm Seppi from the back of the court. The only real question is can Fed break the record of never winning a tournament in which he met Seppi in an earlier round? Allez!


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. Agreed, I’m sure Fed with ace this one in straight sets this time and go on to beat Nadal (if Rafa makes it through).

  2. What if Seppi gives Roger some contagious disease at the handshake that causes Roger to lose in the tournament.

  3. Hi Jonanthan

    A routine match, but he seemed not to firing on his serve, just rustiness I guess, next up Seppi – here’s hoping he will put him in his place this time. Always lovely to see him on court I’m always so much happier when there is tennis on the TV – have to say never seem to watch much of anything else and I possibly made 4th place?

    1. Yeah I watch zero TV, not worth the licence fee tbh. BBC is just state propaganda along with a few crappy dramas.

      A lot of people speculating Fed was changing his service motion but I have no idea, wasn’t watching that closely at midnight tbh so hard to say…

  4. What a sick half volley passing shot at 2:45 in the video! I like Fed’s chances to make the semis since now Stan has been eliminated. Not sure about Fed winning the whole thing, I managed to catch Djokovic’s opening match and he looked very solid. Gonna be another blockbuster if it’s another Fedovic final.

    Jonathan, I tried using Live Chat during the match, but for some reason the chat application never loaded on my browser. I could load the page, but the actual chat app didn’t present itself. I logged in and out several time and tried Safari, Chrome and FireFox, all to no avail. I’ve updated my Macbook to the lastest flash player and other related software, so not entirely sure of the problem. Live Chat was running fine just about 12 months ago and for reasons unbeknown, it stopped functioning after Wimbledon last year. πŸ™

    1. Fed/Djoker more even on a slower hard court so would be pretty tough for Roger to overcome but not impossible that’s for sure.

  5. Decent first round to get the campaign rolling. Nice to see Fed carrying aggressive play from Dubai into the slower conditions of IW, let’s hope that sticks as he gets deeper. First serve % and UE on the BH probably the only issues if you will but can’t say more on a first round. So a Seppi rematch it is, indeed a very interesting stat that Fed has never won the tournament when the two play, that needs to end this week. Also what happened to Stan? Not a fan of the conditions I assume, I think there’s a good opportunity for Berdych to take advantage.

  6. Yes, this was pretty simple for the Feds. I hope he picks up a little on 1st serve %, but for a first match, there’s not much to complain about. Hope Feds puts Seppi in his place, and the mentioned jinx is broken too!

    Shame about Stan, but in the past, he was always inconsistent – one of the reasons why DC has eluded the Swiss for so long IMO – so he’s not going to completely change his spots. And he’s been out for about a month I believe: I hope this pays off in the long term for him.

    Dimitrov got a bit lucky against Kyrgios who (to be fair) did play pretty well. But Dimitrov needs to sharpen up and finish his early matches more efficiently, otherwise those big titles are always going to elude him. Fun match though.

      1. AT least he showed true class by not taking an MTO. No wonder Roger Federer was one of his idols growing up.

      2. Dunno about that, he rolled his ankle, it was clear to see. An MTO would have been perfectly justifiable. Fed took ones against Bolelli…

        Taking an MTO at key junctures of a match for phantom injuries – bad.

        Taking an MTO when you just rolled your ankle and you’re about to serve for the match – fine.

        If anything it could work against you and break momentum so hardly an advantage.

    1. Don’t know why he didn’t really – Nadal certainly would have! And you were right on Tomic beating Ferrer (damn) – guess the little guy has been working his butt off winning titles recently, and he had a tough first match (my heart sank a bit then). I will pay much more attention to your tips in future Jonathan!

      1. Just one of my many far out picks to come good. Combine that with the hundreds I get wrong, if you’d waged Β£100 on each of them since the start of this blog, you’d probably be at breakeven πŸ˜€

  7. Hmm, poor first serve percentage and way too many UEs. People on the ATP site saying a) he was shanking way too much and b) they thought he modified his service action partway through. Did anyone see any signs of that? I didn’t even have Internet last night, so didn’t realise he’d even played until I turned the TV on about 1 am and looked on the text service!

    Sounds oddly rusty or something, but then I got that impression from the exho against Dimi too?

    1. Conal said something similar earlier. I personally didn’t see anything visible. It’s possible he may have tried to protect his back the way he has done in the past on serve. But my instinct is that since he allowed himself to get so frustrated about his backhand late in the match, he wasn’t thinking about things like injury, since when he’s been injured in the past, he looks kind of emotionless when he misses, which wasn’t the case here. If he DID tweak his motion, I doubt it was for anything to worry about

    2. I wasn’t really concentrating that much towards the end, it was a precession so I was already visualising sleeping :). Certainly wasn’t noticeable like Hamburg though when he could hardly walk.

      I’m not going to start watching highlights with a micro scope either, fans are hyper sensitive to this kind of stuff and speculation about injury usually turns out to be nothing. We’ll find out as the tournament progresses if anything is up…

    3. I can agree to that. Federer seemed really disinterested right after match point. He is usually pretty well behaved, and sheepish after wins, but I noticed something bigger. Some sort of, “I’m so tired, I can’t take this any more, I just want to be out of here”, kind of look. Maybe it all really isn’t anything. We’ll see.

      1. Yeah I said, Fed’s service motion seemed stiff. His back didn’t arc as much as it usually does.

      2. I vote for Roger crashing out of the tournament, and denying Ellison his dream SF. πŸ™‚

      3. I wouldn’t be totally surprised, either.

        Boy, has anyone looked at the weather forecast? 13 on Friday and 9 on Sunday? Ouch. Perhaps Fed would be better out of it – it might be warmer in the UK!

  8. Agree about 1st serve % & UEs as others have said. On the other hand his level was clearly higher than Schwartzmann’s, & it’s true Roger’s often not terribly great about practicing his best when his opponent doesn’t demand it of him. Yes, saw several shanks & odd errors like attempted drop shots not even reaching his own side of the net. One shot went wide – I was going to say BH but now I’m wondering if he didn’t run around it to hit a FH down the line – and he yelled out “AAARRRGGGG!!!” in frustration. It has been off & on windy in IW, I wondered if that was an issue. Also wondered if the local time put it right at sunset, which could change atmospheric conditions fairly quickly while they’re playing.

    I wonder to what extent he is affected emotionally by Lammer retiring from tennis. They’ve known each other forever, Lammer is actually a bit younger than he is – I’m sure it’s a factor, though I don’t expect it to be a huge one, or hopefully to last long, either. I wondered if that was on his mind with his recent comments implying his (r-word) could be closer than we think, whereas in the past he’s always implied it could be much farther away than we think. (And for what it’s worth, I think both can be true, depending on where he is on any given day with himself & with his head. I don’t expect him to act on either without giving himself plenty of time to be quite sure he’s ready.)

    1. He also apparently said in press he’s been recuperating from a pretty bad headache, & it could be down to that as well.

      (Hydration, Roger. Electrolytes. Less jetting from West Coast to East Coast & back in the space of 2 days.)

    2. Lammer has to be slim to no effect. Fed is going to have known for a while anyway most likely so doubt it was a surprise. Not sure they spent much time together on tour anyway? Fed has seen many guys retire like Roddick, Ljubicic etc. who are more parallel to him and he saw on a daily basis.

      I also have to laugh at fans who clamour around Lammer making out like he shouldn’t retire, how sad they are or how they will miss him etc. Give me a break, pure lip service. I doubt prior to the Davis Cup last year that they had even heard of him now suddenly the tour will be a terrible place without him??? Ask them in 25 years who was in the Swiss DC team and they’re struggling to name him.

    3. Just read Lammer used to share a flat with Fed + Mirka and they have known each other since they were 10. Didn’t know that. Guessing Fed has known since Lammer decided, whenever that was, obviously before Dubai but dunno when.

  9. Agree about the rehydration!! That return journey and too much Moet to blame for sure!! Yes 1st serve rusty but v routine match and he things he can work on! Picking him to beat Seppi in straight sets!!

  10. Here’s a stupid comment from a typical, stupid Rafa fan.

    Roger is the man for those that dont know tennis….For tose of us that love the Game Rafa will always be number 1

    You heard that guys? None of you on this blog know anything about tennis.

    Those who love the game, can never love Rafa, who is everything wrong that can be with tennis.

    1. You should avoid sites which are filled with Nadalites – guaranteed to push up your blood pressure! πŸ˜‰

    2. You can find the same comment written by Fed fans though, just swap the names around and type it in Google πŸ˜†

      Fans can make their choices, if they pick Nadal just thank them for making it public knowledge they are stupid πŸ˜‰

      1. Slamdunk, I have a habit of reading the first couple of threads on atp world tour, which reeks of enough stupidity from Nadal fans.

        Jon, sure, but stupid Nadal fans outnumber stupid Fed fans 100 to 1. πŸ™‚

  11. Good match good start. Seppi is next and he’s in for a hurting. Roger will own him if he just plays like Roger!

    Ha! Larry goes to Rafa’s match and doubles, skips Roger’s match. Did you know Rafa gets yo set his schedule(whether it’s waiting to get rest or get through early)?! That’s not fair, but then again….. The guy stays at Ellison’s house! What do you think??

    1. What IS it with Ellison & Rafa? Is he just a fan? Do they have some kind of history? You’d think he’d want to avoid the appearance of favoritism……

      or maybe not.

      1. Beats me. I can’t think why any TD would want to give such an impression of favouritism.

      2. Ellison’s daughter is a huge Nadal fan. After Nadal’s 2012 loss, she was crying. Nadal squarely blamed the windy conditions for his loss. He was also not happy about the speed of the courts and said something on the lines, “If Roger wants fast courts, they will do it.” Not surprisingly, Nadal won in 2013, and got to play Roger, playing at his absolute worst, in the QF. Why did Roger even play that match? Call it the Ellison effect.

        Don’t forget that Ellison is also a businessman. Nadal needs a lot of “ego stroking” to take part at IW. Ellison will do it for the sake of his tournament.

        Alison, that guy is not just a TD, he is the fifth richest man in the world. When you are that rich, you can get a few things done you know, including bringing a smile to your daughters face. πŸ™‚

      3. That is not his daughter. It is his wife! I just looked it up!!!! I mean since Larry has taken over the tournament, all but 1 year had Rafa and Roger in the same SF (past 4 years)…. I tried flipping a coin and can never get it to fall 4 times on a single side, let alone 4 times in a row! The draw is not fair IMO.

        Slams with Rafa + Roger in same half since 2013:
        β€’ 2013 Wimbledon QF
        β€’ 2013 USO QF
        β€’2014 AO SF
        β€’2014 Wimby SF
        β€’2015 AO SF

        *Rafa did not play 2012 USO or 2013 AO, but Roger drew the #3 seed for his SF opponent, which would have been Nadal had he played……

      4. Ellison’s daught is a huge Nadal fan? How come upon searching on Google I found several pictures of his ‘daughter’ sporting Federer’s blue gear at Indian Wells 2012 (incidentally the same year as he beat Nadal in the semis).

      5. Evidently, there’s some confusion. Someone post on this blog that Ellison’s daughter was crying after Nadal’s loss (which would clearly make her a fan).

        And, Brandon, who was that girl who looked somewhat underage, sitting right next to Ellison in 2012? Cannot be a wife or girlfriend. We are talking two different things I guess.

        As for wearing Roger’s gear, lot of people do that. We’ve seen Ellison cheering for both players on different days.

      6. Either ways, whoever commented that Ellison’s daughter was crying after that Nadal loss was wrong. It was just slander. And perhaps also the fact that she is a huge fan of Nadal.

        Mea Culpa!

  12. By the way Jonathan, meant to say I love the photo you picked for the top of the article – perfectly balanced, amazing light, tells where he is… πŸ™‚

    1. Yea the photo is a wow photo. But I too think he looked tired during the match. His usual stoneface with the corners of mouth more down than usual? He told earlier of a terrible headache. Too much rush, champagne, hype? Anyway, the match was ok with some Roger-magics? Hopefully taking (health) care now…

      1. Well, the photo at which the highlights reel above is currently stopped, and which the ATP site had on its front page yesterday (I see it has even more unflattering pics of players today!) had Roger looking really old, like wrong-side-of-sixty old. Maybe he really wasn’t feeling good.

  13. Also day conditions are v tricky. Andy said v hard to control the ball. Playing at 7pm will suit Roger more and he did say his headache was clearing. Picking him to raise his game v a Seppi this time and take him down in 2 sets.

    1. Thanks for the link slamdunk, yes, he certainly sounds more upbeat than he did a few days ago, doesn’t he?

  14. Geez, I have to really say that the court conditions of the Indian Wells thus far have been dire. It’s freaking clay, insanely slow and high bouncing. Even Nadal, unusually for him who should benefit from this played poorly against Young because he could hit any winners. I’m attributing this to the reason why most of the Fedalovic matches have been really poor. Who would benefit from this? Isner’s kick serve? Oh wait…

  15. guys, while I was watching the Seppi’s match, I noticed something. I noticed that Roger has gain some muscle and he seems bulky πŸ™‚
    I don’t know if it was me or my TV screen πŸ™‚

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