ATP FinalsRoger Federer

Zverev Sees Off Federer to Make the Final at the O2

The German Wins 7-5, 7-6 (7-5) at the Nitto ATP Finals

Alexander Zverev is through to the Nitto ATP Finals after victory on Saturday over six-time former champion Roger Federer.

The third seed recorded a 7-5, 7-6(5) win in 1 hour and 35 minutes and is the first German to do make the final since 1996.

The result sees Roger bow out at the semi-final stage for the second year in succession and he ends his season with a 48:10 Win-Loss record and 4 titles; the Australian Open, Rotterdam, Stuttgart, and Basel. Not bad!

Quick Match Recap

Fed Zverev WTF 2018

Federer won the toss and elected to receive finding himself up 15-30 after a Zverev double the fault but the German reeled off three points in a row to hold for 1-0.

A hold to 30 saw Roger level and the pair then exchanged more comfortable holds but it was Zverev looking the stronger of the two from the baseline. 

In game six Roger began to throw in the drop shot and a fun game with some fast net reactions saw him hold for 3-3.

The Swiss then had 15-30 on the return but a weak return saw the window of opportunity go begging and Zverev held for 4-3. 

The number three seed soon found himself up 6-5, having lost just 7 points on serve in the set and he played a strong return game to snatch it, connecting sweetly on every return to break to love and take it 7-5.

Into set two and the pair exchanged love holds for 1-1. Roger then fashioned his first break points of the match at 0-40. Zverev saved two of them, the first by winning a 24 shot rally but the Swiss broke for 2-1.

Could Fed consolidate? Nope, he dropped serve to fifteen and made just one first serve. Zverev held his next game to love to lead 3-2.

In game eight Roger found himself down 0-30 after a timid approach shot but managed to sneak out the game for 4-4. Four simple holds later and it was tie-break time.

The first point saw Fed miss a very makeable passing shot. He should have ripped the forehand winner originally, but Zverev blocked the volley back and Roger dumped a makeable backhand into the net.

Fortunately, that didn't rattle him and he settled nicely on the serve moving up 4-3. Then came the contentious part of the match, with Zverev serving at 3-4 he stopped mid-rally when a ball boy behind Roger dropped a ball that rolled onto the court.

That resulted in the point being replayed which Zverev won with an ace. Strictly speaking, the Umpire is the one who's supposed to stop play, so Zverev took a risk in stopping play however the ball boy admitted his mistake and Umpire rolled with that.

Zverev won his next service point too and at 4-5, Roger missed a routine volley to give Zverev match points.  It was poor execution as Roger tried to cushion the volley but it was spinning downwards with very little pace so it died off the strings. 

Roger saved the first on his own serve but Zverev sealed it behind his own to take it 7-5 in the second.

Match Stats

  Roger Federer Alexander Zverev
Aces 3 7
Double Faults 0 1
1st Serve 57% (37/65) 66% (43/65)
1st Serve Points Won 78% (29/37) 88% (38/43)
2nd Serve Points Won 61% (17/28) 64% (14/22)
Break Points Saved 0% (0/2) 67% (2/3)
Service Games Played 12 12
1st Serve Return Points Won 12% (5/43) 22% (8/37)
2nd Serve Return Points Won 36% (8/22) 39% (11/28)
Break Points Converted 33% (1/3) 100% (2/2)
Return Games Played 12 12
Winners 13 23
Unforced Errors 20 20
Net Points Won 77% (17/22) 67% (16/24)
Service Points Won 71% (46/65) 80% (52/65)
Return Points Won 20% (13/65) 29% (19/65)
Total Points Won 45% (59/130) 55% (71/130)


Press Conference

Thoughts on the Match

Fed Zverev World Tour Finals 18

I didn't think I was hitting my spots very well for the majority of the match, it came more towards the end which helped me make it competitive and close. I think I could have done better at returning Sascha's first serves in spells. 

Having the break and giving it back was annoying. Reminded me a bit of the Nishikori situation. I feel like I can play better but you know, it's one of those indoor matches where margins are slim, opportunities are rare, a point here or there. Maybe I didn't push enough or have enough to make the difference, I was chasing the score all the time.

A disappointing end to the World Tour Finals and an ineffectual performance from Federer. It wasn't a terrible display by any means as the sets were close but Roger didn't really put the odds in his favour with how he was playing. 

It was all quite passive and you never felt like he had the confidence to just go for it on an important point. The 4-4 point in the tie-break summing it up as he just kept the ball in play. Yes, he was probing with the slice but there wasn't much conviction to his shots when the situation was crying out for him to push forward and take the initiative.

Going in I expected a similar tactical display to the one against Anderson by using his short slice and taking it early but he played quite tamely allowing Zverev to be the aggressor and that's why the German came out on top.

The positives were that he moved well and was solid at the net, barring the piss poor miss in the tie-break where he tried to cushion volley a ball that was always going to die off the strings. The negatives would be the first serve which is not landing with enough regularity and the forehand which doesn't look like a weapon anymore.

We're used to line finding frozen rope and liquid whip forehands and him skipping around backhands to fire off inside out winners but they haven't been seen in a long while. Instead, it's a loopy, muscled in ball that isn't getting him on top in points from the baseline. Is the hand still an issue or is it just a psychological thing from the compromises he had to make on it during the summer? Who knows.

As for the ‘controversy' with the ball kid dropping the ball, I don't think there is much to say about it. Fed was certainly on top in the rally so does he win that point and snatch the breaker just as he was starting to play a bit better? Maybe but I don't think you can say with any real confidence he was the better player over the two sets so what can you do other than say unlucky.

Anyway, that concludes the season. I'll likely do a recap post in December but here is Fed's take 🙂

Sampras said once upon a time if you win a slam, it's a good season. I had a great start. The second half could have been better. I lost a couple of close matches that could have turned things around for me, like Paris or Wimbledon, but I'm happy, I was close, and there are many positives.

I'm excited about the new year. Looking forward to vacation and eager to see what wer'e going to work on exactly. What the decision will be for the clay, we'll make a decision on that in the next few weeks and come up with a good schedule that suits my family.

What did you guys think of the match? Let me know in the comments.


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. That was disappointing, but at least Roger played OK, and was much better than in the Nishikori match. I like Sascha, so if Fed had to lose was glad it was to the youngster. I am hoping against hope that Sascha can win against Novak, but know that given Novak’s current form, that isn’t too likely.

  2. fed needs to rest his body and fix his FH and serve and plan a good schedule , back to back tournament should not play anymore in this age not good for him but I think he still play Stuttgart and halle again grass season is short so he want to play many of them I think he will skip clay again did fed want to try ?

    1. Ye interested to see what he does with clay. He will decide very soon as he will do different training. But whether he reveals anything about it until closer the time who knows.

  3. [When the situation was crying out for him to push forward and take the initiative]

    Exactly my thoughts! What I saw today was Reacterer. I was crying when he simply refused to take the initiative on so many occasions, to the point that Zverev started finding him predictable, especially after what Roger fed Keving – minus that change of pace, post slice, sneaky down the line backhand that caught Zverev off guard. The only positives for me is that it’s the year end, he is 37 (we all know that), and despite not expecting too much given what he started doing in January 2017, this wasn’t bad. A good rest, and that serve and forehand should be back in business.

    I think what Roger really needs next year is to add some risk, actually, quite a bit of risk to his game, particularly on return games. Of course, he needs to hold consistently for that. The days or throwing varieties at opponents are coming to an end. The short balls drawing in opponents do work but will reap even lesser returns next season.

    2019 potentially Roger’s last year on tour. You heard it first here. Maybe he might stretch it a bit to reach Connors. But that’s it.

    Overall, I’m happy with 2018. I knew his form would represent a sinusoid throughout the year as well as during tournaments and that’s exactly what happened.

  4. I agree with Hartt,if Fed had to lose far better to Sascha(such a shame about all that booing)than to the machine.
    Just watching the other semi and Mr freakin’ Anderson can’t get a first serve in and of course Djoker breaks him.So that’s the first set gone,with the new wonderful Djokovic serve?

  5. Well, he has to play better than that to win. Agree with Jonathan (except not about 5 stars for serving; didn’t he start out at about 30% 1st serves for about 4 games?) and Hartt, and Sid too. And with Roger himself; 4 titles is not awful – as I saw somebody say, for many tennis pros that would be a career year.

    Having said that, and in spite of Fed himself apparently believing everything is physically in great shape, those of us observing are pretty consistently saying everything is not clicking as we’d expect. Fabulous Fed still beats this Sascha, but that’s not who we got today. (While giving much credit to Sascha for playing well & holding on to his self-belief). Some of it must surely be age, but hopefully some of it is something they can correct. We won’t know till we get there. Regroup, reanalyze, work out the best approach. I’m glad he’s continuing to sound enthusiastic for next year.

      1. Well, there we are. Wrist/hand still an issue. And why wouldn’t it be. Think of how many times he has hit a tennis ball in his life. Anyone care to guess?
        Holiday in the Maldives? Back home for the kids to ski. Then off to Dubai to start again. Not a bad life at all.
        Many good memories this year. Some close and tough loses. A documentary about Fed for 2018 should be titled…”The Agony and the Ecstasy”.

    1. Yes, here’s hoping that over the off season he can work on that forehand and serve and get them back to some semblance of reality. And get his brain back to the concept of being aggressive rather than passive. Then we shall see what we shall see …

  6. So that’s that. A loss to Sascha with a decent scoreline doesn’t sting. (Although Sascha will most probably lose tamely against Novak the resurrected tomorrow).
    2018 wasn’t bad, not at all. We had slam 20, we had that long undefeated streak at the beginning, we had the oldest ever no.1, and we had no.99. We had magic shots as well (the round the post shot against Nick).
    Yes, hope Fed’s back in 2019 with his serve and forehand repaired and reliable and with his 2017 carpe diem mentality back in place.

      1. Thanks, Thinker. I’m just too superstitious to comment *during* a tournament, but I avidly read every single post by Jonathan and every single comment by Fed fans here.

  7. Great comments by Jonathan and all the reliables. Everything you have said echoes my thoughts. I think Fed ends the season with enough confidence (finding a way to win in Basel, Novak match in Paris, and his improvement arc at this tournament) to build upon in 2019 with a focus on getting more serves in and consistency on both wings.

  8. Disappointing loss, imo. Oh well, not too annoyed but been a few times this passiveness has cost him in games this year.

    As for the season I think it was ultimately a successful one but maybe defined more by the close losses. Main one that stands out is vs Del Potro in Indian Well, and then obviously vs Anderson, vs Millman, vs Djokovic recently and so on. I think losing that match at IW had him struggle for confidence for the rest of the season.

    One thing I’m not sure whether it’s a positive or a negative is that the problems with Fed’s game has been a variety of things this year – the serve, the backhand, the forehand – but never the movement (or rarely, rather). Probably a good thing going forward I guess.

    1. That’s consistent with the whole hand thing don’t you think? Serve – hand, possibly something else too if the toss was off.. Forehand – hand. Movement – not hand.

      Also agree with what Jonathan said in one of the comments about all of this affeting his confidence – this stuff cascades.

    2. I totally agree with you that its a good thing that the movment isnt the case because the otherones he can practice on and find some good punshes again but if he has problem with the movement because of the age, then time sadly can be reversed.

  9. Well I don’t know.
    Hardest for me to take are those bloody sycophants on Sky Sports digging up statistics to say how wonderful Djoker is
    and Mr freakin’ Anderson obliging them up by a woeful semi with hardly a first serve in.
    So annoying ?
    Hopefully Sascha at least makes it competitive tomorrow.Cant make my mind up about ignoring the whole thing or ruining my Sunday by watching it.

  10. Disappointing that he did not get another chance to win the WTF. Not a big surprise these days when Roger loses to one of the top 10, but it was shocking that he failed to take the initiative and be the aggressor. Playing baseline passive tennis against any top player who makes a living from back there is not really a winning game for Roger. All said and done, having a 48-10 year with one slam and reaching the top rank during the year at 37 is not a bad year. We are just so used to so much more that even this looks disappointing. Hoping for a better 2019 with a healthy Roger and a Wimbledon title.

  11. Nice to see that the positives are more important than natural disappointment. Chance for encouragement. Excited for next year – GO ROGER!

  12. Oh well… He gave us 1 grandslam lets move on and lets drink to that… 🙂 See you guys next year.. So excited….. 🙂 🙂

  13. I don’t think rest is what Roger needs. He gets plenty of that. He needs some ‘bottle’, but as some commenters have noted, that’s what has apparently gone from his game. His nerve fails him in the key moments. At 37, I don’t think he will get at back.

    1. Roger has had a wrist injury since June. This is the reason for most of what has NOT been working as we are used to since then. I think this is what all of those that are writIng about him being disappointing should have in mind.
      In other words it’s disappointing for me that he’s been injured half of the season preventing from better results.
      Hopefully he’ll get rid of that until late December (Hopeman Cup).

      1. I’m a big believer in if you’re playing you’re healthy enough to play and be judged by your own standards. Just as Armstrong above predicting Fed will never be back is rather hasty, I find a lot of Fed fans are too happy to put asterisks next to Fed’s losses (he was beaten soundly, BUT he was injured etc). In other words, in my view the wrist injury is not the root cause of Fed not being all at the races for a while.

      2. Fans are too quick to suggest injury when Federer loses. It’s like Nadal fans saying Nadal
        only loses when he is injured. Federer’s wrist, Nadal’s knees – whatever. I am disappointed that Federer now talks up his wrist issues. Del Potro has had wrist issues. He couldn’t play for long periods and required surgery. That’s an injury. Not a niggle. All players have those. Federer was able to break Zverev at key moments in their match. Was his injury affecting him then? Or does it only affect him when he gets tight and butchers an easy volley in a tie-break?

    2. I suspect that the nerve and the problem with the hand are interlinked. (Remember the alleged finger problem when he lost early at the AO?) If you can’t be sure of your best weapons, it’s bound to sow doubts in your head. I’m hoping the mental side will improve once the physical side does.

    3. Of course he needs to heal up. Wether that’s rest or therapy I don’t know, but something is wrong (as he’s admitted) with his serving and FH that’s not just age or nerves.

      He’s hitting very weird – like Rafa motion – (without the power of Rafa).

  14. I think Federer has problem with his wrist, look how he was hitting the ball and the way he serven, the placement was very bad and that shows something is wrong. I must say that Sasha played very Well, his Avg serve was 212 km per hour, thats hugh!!! And 65 procent in 1 st serves. Fed didnt have the whippe to push zverev around and he was hopping for z to miss. Federer shows some good defence today that actually impressario me.
    Last year in the open he said the back was fine….IT WASNT, not close, it wasnt sure if he should have make the cut but he played halfinjured the hole tournament but still said to the reporters that he felt good.
    Have we ever seen fed end so many shots above the head? No, there must be a reason for why he hit like that, he doesnt have the same speed there. I wonder if one can find the difference in groundstroke this tournament and at the start of the year.

    1. I don’t know why people have to chose between “IF HE’S HEALTHY ENOUGH TO PLAY THEN NO EXCUSES!!” on the one hand, or “HE’S INJURED – THIS DOESN’T COUNT!” on the other.

      Of course it counts. And of course he is hampered by injury.

      Both true.

      I want him healed up. He’ll do better with what he has left. Still doesn’t mean he’ll be back to 2017 form, but it sure seems like he can do better than this.

      1. Exactly Alb! If he is injured and loses, it is what it is BUT it’s a reason not an excuse. Fed has never retired from a match but has powered through many times. Yes, he chooses to play knowing he has a good chance he will lose. It’s not saying he is a victim. Or the opponent didn’t play well.

  15. Good post Jonathan I’m sorry Fed lost, but everyone who is a
    Fan has been wondering where his forehand and serve has gone.
    At last he has admitted it hand/wrist still a problem. I can
    understand that during the tennis year he doesn’t want to take
    more time off….I think if he did he would call it a day. At his age
    pro tennis time not on his side. Sasha won and terrible that the
    so called ‘FEDFANS’ couldn’t give him his moment, so I hope
    this spurs him on. Will miss tennis not being on SKY but won’t
    miss the tennis team….hope they haven’t got jobs on other channels!!!!

    1. have you read that he said he still has problem? I havent heard but was thinking he had pain because the way he hit it last couple of weeks.

      1. I read that in one of his press conferences that he did after the match (maybe the one in Swiss)? that his hand/wrist was still bothering him.

      2. So Zverev didn’t really win – because of Roger’s “injury”? Same with Nishikori’s win over Roger. Still injured. Very sporting. Talk of injury devalues an opponent’s victory.

      1. Thanks I saw that no Jonathan!

        Armstrong, ofcourse its not all about the wrist when he looses but its obvious that If you cant hit like you normally do with your best stroke it will make you less dangerouse and federer is relying on his forhand VERY MUCH and to be honest, he didnt do so many good forhandshots so it did had an inpact on his game. If we look at his forhand for the hole autumn, he has misshit alot and it has looked very strange and one player dont forget how you hit your best shot from one month to another.

  16. I am not that sad about Roger’s loss yesterday. Just grateful for the passion he showed all year long still happy to practice every day, while  enduring pains we are not aware of. He did what he could, giving his whole heart in it.

    I like what he said to the Tages Anzeiger : 
     “In the off season I want to work on coming more often to the net again and on my forehand to hit with full force again, also the fitness will be a focus…”

    I immensely admire him for constantly trying to improve,  adapt his game to his age while he has won everything that could be won. Companions, be happy ! A Fed 3.0 may emerge in 2019. Why not number 100 at the AO19 ? It would be a dream…

    I also love the beautiful text written by Sameena here…

  17. To me it seems more mental than physical.Injuries surely are there all the time,he played really well against Anderson,but
    yesterday seemed lacking in oomph,mojo,whatever you want to call it.What is worrying is the increasing tendency to
    break an opponents serve and then drop his own serve to love!I am not optimistic about increasing his slam count(I hope
    am wrong)there are far too many players now who can catch him on one of his off days.Even first and second round matches are a worry.Let alone the unknowns who pop up,beat him and then disappear again.
    Well the sun is shining here so into the garden I go,no watching the Djoker for me.I would like Sascha to win,but I don’t think he will.Fed has had a good year and a wonderful Indian summer last year,realistically I think we should be happy with that.?

    1. Well we don’t know how big a deal the hand injury is. Unfortunately he will never mention this stuff to the English speaking press as it won’t be covered properly.

      1. No, federer not speaking about his problem so when he has pain. I mean back in 2013 he had BIG problem with the back but he didnt told the press how BOG they actually was, and why should he? It can give the opponent a advantage. Its like in ice-hockey, they never says where a player is injured, just that it is low body injure or an upper. At the open last year Federer had BIG problem, not only from the back I got from a person close to the team but he never told anyone about that but everybody could see that something was very wrong.

        But for us fans it would have been nice to know how his body feeling. The legs and knee seems good and thats the most important for me because then he can heal his wrist and it should be okay. Not like fed 2017, that was CRAZY but still enough to go deep in tournaments.

  18. Oh well another match which Roger had his chances but slipped through his racquet. The effects of his hand injury is telling, low 1st serve percentage, FH lack punch and making him doubt himself. Overall its been a topsy turvy 2018 but he get his no 20 and got to no 1. Mix result year but no 20 its super special. I hope he can strive to hit no 100 at AO2019, just need to reset get some rest and back to intensive training in Dec.

  19. I think it was there for all to see, one of Roger’s strengths in the last few years was his ability to serve and hit all the spots. Since Halle he hasn’t been able to rely on serve, and his forehand has only been there at times, no way can he cope with big servers when underpar.

  20. There is something fun. In 2013, I wrote down the top-ranked players on the ATP. Then I predicted who would be on the list 5 years later. So the nextgen players were teenagers and unknown to the world. 2013 was the year Fed struggled with his back. Just found it the other day.
    Can you believe it, no Fed or Nadal !!!! I thought they would have retired. How lucky are we Roger is still gracing us with his tennis. Not too bad a guess.

    April 29 2013

    1. Djoker
    2. Fed
    3. Murray
    4. Ferrer
    5. Nadal
    6. Berdych
    7. Delpo
    8. Tsonga
    9. Gasquet
    10. Tipsarivic
    11. Cilic
    12. Almagro
    13. Raonic
    14. Haas
    15. Nishikori
    16. Wawrinka
    17. Simon
    18. Seppi
    19. Querrey
    20. Monaco

    April 30 2018

    1. Nadal
    2. Fed
    3. Zverev
    4. Cilic
    5. Dimi
    6. Delpo
    7. Thiem
    8. Anderson
    9. Isner
    10. Goffin
    11.Carreno Busta
    12. Djoker
    13. Querry
    14. RBA
    15. Sock
    16. Schwartzman
    17. Berdych
    18. Pouille
    19. Fognini
    20. Raonic

    My predictions for April 2018

    1. Djokovic
    2. Murray
    3. Berdych
    4. Dimi
    5. Tomic lol
    6. Raonic
    7. Delpo
    8. Cilic
    9. Nishikori
    10. Anderson

    1. Actually, you did well with your predictions, with 5 in the top 10. The one I think is sad is Berdych being so far down in the rankings.

      1. Yes, not a bad prediction. From April 2018 Djoker 12th to 1st. I’ve warmed up to Berdych lately. Hated his smugness Wimby 2010. Wonder if his back will be ok again to play.
        And I do miss Stan and Andy.
        Hip hip hooray for Sasha!!! Lendl will be a big help in 2019. I forgive you for beating Roger.

    1. Save it as an image, then try pasting the image in a reply. I’m not managing to decode it. Why are there 3 x “1. “ ? Fun exercise.

      1. Ok, the 3 1. s are: actual 2013, actual 2018, predicted 2018. Yes? And the 11-12-13 etc inserted themselves in the middle?

    2. Send me the list and I’ll put it in the comment properly.

      I’ve removed it for now as nobody would be able to figure it out, half of it was missing as well.

  21. Sasha!!!!!!!!!! He demolished Djoker. The next Gen is here and I feel Sasha will be ready for a slam next year. That unbelievable shot he made to win the match could only be matched by Fed.

    1. Loved that shot, curling in. He was lucky to make it – had to race over there to get his racquet on the ball at all.

      1. No, not saying he planned it; but he DID have to race over there to make his opponent play one. More. Shot, and he DID get his racquet on it, and it DID curl in, and it was amazing. Ironic too because Djoker has had plenty of those just-get-there-and-get-your-racquet-on-it-and-sometimes-it-goes-in shots, too. More than one while playing against our guy.

  22. As usual I didn’t watch what was probably one of the most important matches of 2018.A changing of the guard and much needed.?

  23. Oh wow! Didn’t see this coming! Sascha wins so easily over Novak! Whatever happened to the terminator? Thank heavens, though. Am so depending on the next gen kids to step up whenever Fed’s unable to do so. Not a bad way to end 2018!

    1. Zverev is playing very consistently from the baseline, serving really-really well and has no major issues at the net, which is somewhat unexpected in view of his height and also the trouble that other tall guys have when coming forward.
      As for Fed, yeah, the news about the wrist make sense; what I noticed the most was that his backhand was much less an attacking shot than a defensive one. He slapped one backhand for each twenty slices. That’s what happens when you have a single hand backhand… No left wrist to compensate.

      1. Zverev is going Raonic’s way. Big serving and volleying so long the body holds. I feel, he will end like Raonic.

  24. Djoko to Sasha: “you definitely played better today than you played at the group stage”.
    Yeah Satan… remember 2015???

    Congrats Sasha

    1. Yes, I remembered Fed beating Djoker in the RR and then losing to him in the final, but thought it was unlikely it would be the same this time.

  25. So glad Sacsha backed up the win over Roger.
    I didn’t feel so bad yesterday because I thought he just played a very good match and it wasn’t a bad match by Roger who clearly struggles with his forehand. His game lacks venom without serve-forehand combinations to give him easy points on serve.

  26. Wonderful Sasha ! I am sure Fed is happy for him. Very well done…
    – Fed remains the single winner with 6 WTF. 🙂
    – Sasha (21 yo) has won more WTFs than Rafa…:-)
    – Sasha is now ranked 4th, at 35 atp points only from Fed… 🙁

  27. From what I heard, when Fed lost in the semis, there were a lot of resale tickets for the final. Take notice, Benneteau.
    No Fed = no tennis for so many.

      1. I think that Sasha has all the ingredients to be a tennis super star.Very good-looking ,a pleasant personality,speaks three
        languages fluently etc.The future of tennis,which had seemed rather dull now enlivened by young gods,Greek,Norse and a
        German hero in Wagnerian mode.The Australian Open now seems a rather exciting prospect where we shall discover if they
        can live up to their promise.?

      2. Sascha’s yet to go very far in slams, so let’s not get too much ahead of ourselves. And remember, he’s only 21.

    1. Yeah read Scarlett Li tweeting her WTF Final tix price dropped significantly with Roger’s semis exit. Roger = tennis, a lot of ppl are willing to pay good money to watch him play win or lose. Though Zverev beat Djoker but it wasn’t good in terms of shot making or points construction – endless CC shots gets boring fast.

  28. Nice that Sacha won! What a performance from the young german! 1st set 88% first serve for a while! That is insane! And Djoker returned 82%, and only 6 UNF, that is crazy also!!!!

  29. What a surprise, AZ won WTF. Honestly didnt see that coming, Djoker was playing so good in his route to the final. Good to see AZ partnership with Lendl is paying off. So funny to watch Lendl zero expression on AZ’s win. Roger’s record of 6 WTF still intact for now. Thank you AZ, you can fist pump as often as you want against Djoker.

  30. @Alison,yes you are quite right to suggest a note of caution.Best of three is one thing,best of five quite another.Still it is
    an exciting prospect.

  31. I still believe that 2019 will be a break out year for the next gen and Sasha will be leading that contingency. Watching the ATP final I saw a weakness in Djoker game. He can tell that Sasha and Karen both have what it takes to take it to the next level. I don’t think that the 30 somethings will dominate in 2019, and definitely in 2020. There is a change of guard coming and watching matches with these young guns might be entertaining.

  32. Oh when he crouched down to take a loooooong breath. He is not Superman and these new young guns can keep up with him. I think the “Fantastic 3” know their time is coming to an end and their dominance will not be a factor in 2019. If you think this does not apply to Djoker, let us wait and see. My prediction is that all 4 GS are up for grabs and that nobody right now is a lock for any of them.

    1. Yes, I agree with the Zverev keeping up with him bit. I got the feeling that he expected to have got ahead, and when he got broken he maybe lost heart a bit. Whereas I have to say I don’t think Fed would have withstood the initial barrage, and that would have done wonders for Djoko’s confidence.

  33. Virtually every commenter on this thread has talked about Roger’s wrist. It reads like Nadal fans going on about his “knees” whenever he loses. It’s a bad look. I believe if you are fit enough to take to the court you are fit enough to play – no excuses. Anything else discredits your opponent.

    Rogers toughest losses this year – IW, Halle, Wimbledon came after he had match points. It wasn’t injury that let him down. Other close matches – including the last against Zverev – have been choked away. He has broken serve at critical moments only to hand it straight back with poor play. I believe the mental part of his game is more suspect than any part of his body.

    Yet if he is increasingly having physical concerns it is unlikely now, at age 37, he will be free of them. They will likely accompany him into his retirement, if not speed it up. And, yep, that will affect his confidence. I suspect next year is going to be difficult for Roger and his fans alike.

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