As the 2018 Gerry Weber Open (Halle) has drawn to a close, it is interesting to compare Federer’s statistics in Halle in 2017 and 2018 over the course of the tournament.
Serving wise, Federer was very similar to last year. He hit 31 aces throughout the 2017 tournament, compared to 44 in this years. However, it is important to note that he did play 2 extra sets than he did in 2017, hence the increased number of aces.
In 2017, Federer hit 73.6% of his first serves in and won on average 80.2% of them, this stat is similar to this years as he hit 66.4% of his first serves in and won 82.8% of them. Second serve stats were also similar with Federer winning 58.6% of them in 2017 and 60.4% in 2018.
The key difference was the return game of Federer when compared. In the 2017 whole tournament, Federer won 35.2% of 1st serve return points won, but only managed to win 26% in 2018. For the 2nd serve return points, Federer managed to win 57.8% of them and only 51.7% in 2018.
This was especially shown in the final, Federer only won 13% of Coric’s 1st serve points, a stat directly contrasting to 2017’s where he won 57% of Zverev’s, which led him to victory in the end.
Federer did look tired and off throughout Halle 2018- slow footwork, ball abuse warnings, and more unforced errors in his matches.
As Federer lost to Tommy Haas in the first round in Stuttgart, this would have given Federer more time to recover and fully prepare for Halle. Contrasting to this year, where Federer won Stuttgart and barely had any time to rest coming into Halle. At 36 years old, rest is key for Federer, the less rest he has, the more vulnerable he is being beaten by other opponents.
Arguably, Federer not winning Halle could be a good thing for him, as the press would have made him the overwhelming favourite to win Wimbledon as he'd have been undefeated on the grass so far this year.
|Halle 2017||Halle 2018|
|Average 1st serve %||73.6||66.4|
|Win % on 1st serve||80.2||82.8|
|Win % on 2nd serve||58.6||60.4|
|1st serve return points won %||35.2||26|
|2nd serve return points won %||57.8||51.8|