Roger Federer did was Roger Federer does to Andy Roddick, and that’s whip him. Today, Federer won his 21st match in 23 tries against Roddick dismantling the American 6-3, 6-2 to advance to the semifinals at the Basel Swiss Indoors.
In this matchup of former No. 1s, Federer never was broken as he cracked Roddick’s serve three times.
“We’ve played on so many occasions that sometimes you can’t play your best, and that’s what happened to Andy today,” said Federer after his best match of the tournament. “He didn’t have a very good serving day and then once I get a chance to get into all his service games, it’s always going to be difficult for him to find a way.”
Once again Roddick looked like he had little power from the backcourt, especially off the backhand which Federer picked apart.
Federer now meets countryman Stan Wawrinka who knocked out Florian Mayer.
“This is the first time I’ve played Stan here in Switzerland,” said Federer who is 9-1 against Stan. “We’ve faced off together 10 times and playing back in Switzerland is particularly special because I come from this town and Stan’s not too far away either. I think it’s a special occasion for Swiss tennis and the Swiss fans. He played incredibly well today, so I think this is going to be the test of the tournament for me so far.”
In the earlier semifinal, top seed Novak Djokovic clashes with surprising Kei Nishikori. Watching some of the Novak today the Serb really looked out of sorts in the first set – lots of bad errors and lackluster play – but pulled it together to beat Marcos Baghdatis 2-6, 6-2, 6-3.
“A win is a win,” said Djokovic. “It was a close match. I’ve got to give credit to him because he played really well. He served throughout the whole match really well. I managed to get a couple of crucial breaks towards the end of the second and start of the third set and I think that decided the match.”
Nishikori’s a solid player who could trouble Novak if he gets into another one of those funks we saw today and he is playing with a lot of confidence.
“Djokovic is playing unbelievable this year,” Nishikori said. “He doesn’t have many weaknesses, so I will need to play a bit more aggressive than usual and play my best tennis to beat him.”
Yes you will, Kei.
So one day away from a potential blockbuster Federer-Djokovic final, and I think we’ll see it. Stan wouldn’t really beat Federer in his hometown, would he? And Novak should get his game on track against Nishikori who’ll give the World No. 1 a lot of rhythm.
In Valencia, Juan Martin Del Potro kept alive his slim chances of qualifying for London by beating Sam Querrey 6-2, 7-5 to reach the semifinals. If nothing else, at least Del Potro is finishing the year on a high note.
Delpo now plays Marcel Granollers, an upset winner over Gael Monfils. Like JW Tsonga yesterday, my guess is Monfils had plans in Paris this weekend!
In the second semifinal, defending champion David Ferrer faces Juan Monaco.
Tennis Channel has live Basel semifinals from 930am ET. The Valencia semis will be on tape starting at 8pm ET.
SATURDAY BASEL SCHEDULE
CENTER COURT start 12:30
 M Llodra (FRA) / N Zimonjic (SRB) vs I Dodig (CRO) / V Troicki (SRB)
Not Before 14:30
 N Djokovic (SRB) vs [WC] K Nishikori (JPN)
 R Federer (SUI) vs S Wawrinka (SUI)
X Malisse (BEL) / D Norman (BEL) vs  M Mirnyi (BLR) / D Nestor (CAN) – After Suitable Rest
SATURDAY VALENCIA SCHEDULE
AGORA start 1:30 pm
K Anderson (RSA) / J Isner (USA) vs E Butorac (USA) / J Rojer (AHO)
Not Before 4:00 PM
M Granollers (ESP) vs  J Del Potro (ARG)
Not Before 8:00 PM
 D Ferrer (ESP) vs [WC] J Monaco (ARG)
 B Bryan (USA) / M Bryan (USA) vs M Melo (BRA) / B Soares (BRA)
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