Zverev Upends Federer, Will Face Dominant Djokovic For ATP Finals Title Sunday
by Staff | November 17th, 2018, 7:56 pm
  • 59 Comments

There will no dream final between greats Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic in the title match of the ATP Finals on Sunday in London. That’s because earlier today in the semifinals, Alexander Zverev stunned the Swiss 7-5, 7-6(5) to collect one of his best career wins.

While the score was close, Zverev was in control for much of the match. Federer had an early break point in the second then held off a 3-4, 0-30 deficit on serve later in the set. Otherwise, Zverev was too strong off the ground on the slower indoor surface.

“Against Roger, you have to be the one that is aggressive,” Zverev said. “You have to kind of take the time away from him, otherwise he’s not going to lose the match, especially in a big match, in a big tournament, where he already found his rhythm. That’s what I tried to do. It worked out well.”

Federer, 16 years older than Zverev, was seeking a 7th career ATP Finals title and a 100th overall, two milestones that will have to wait.

“I didn’t think I was hitting my spots very well for the majority of the match,” admitted Federer. “I think it came towards the end, which helped me to make it competitive and close at the very end. I think I could have done better on returning Sascha’s first serves, as well, in spells. I thought especially on his first serve in the beginning I struggled. I got into a better rhythm after that. Obviously, having the break and giving it back again, that was disappointing. It reminded me a little bit of the Nishikori situation.

“Sometimes margins are slim, opportunities are rare. It’s a point here and there that maybe didn’t go my way. Maybe also I didn’t push enough or I didn’t have enough today to make the difference, to be honest. I was always running after the score most of the time. Over time it catches you, obviously.”

Despite the disappointing finish, Federer was pleased with his 2018 season.

“I’m very proud that at 37, I’m still so competitive and so happy playing tennis,” said Federer. “From that standpoint, I mean, as disappointed as I might be about this match, if I take a step back, I’m actually very happy about the season. It’s been an historic season in some ways. Got back to World No. 1. For me, that was a huge moment in my life, to be honest, in my career because I never thought I would get there again.”

Djokovic showed absolutely no mercy in his Wimbledon final rematch against Kevin Anderson, destroying the South African 6-2, 6-2.

“I think it was the best match I’ve played so far this week,” said Djokovic. “It came at the right time.

“Kevin has been playing great tennis this week. He lost his serve in the first game which was big because he relies so much on his serve. I tried to win as many points on his second serve as possible. It worked very well.

“I’m very happy to reach the final.”

Djokovic, who hasn’t dropped serve all week, never faced a break point and lost just seven point on his serve all afternoon.

“I would have loved to have done better the past two matches because I got off to such a good start,” said Anderson. “Right now, obviously it’s very disappointing, upsetting not being able to play a little bit better today… But finishing the year at my career-best [ATP] ranking, there’s been a lot of positives. As a team, we’ll look for ways to improve because I still think there’s room for improvement, there’s still a lot of objectives that I’ve set for myself for next year.”

Djokovic already beat Zverev during the round robin earlier in the week and leads the German 2-1.

“Novak right now is the best player in the world,” said Zverev. “It’s very tough to beat him. He’s barely lost a match in the last six months. He’s playing amazing tennis. You have to play your best game to even have a chance.”

Zverev will have to accomplish the rare feat of beating the top two seeds and Federer then Djokovic on consecutive days at the ATP Finals.

Djokovic is seeking a 73rd title, 5th of the year. Zverev is bidding for his 10th title, 4th of his 2018 season.

SUNDAY ATP FINALS LONDON SCHEDULE
Centre Court 3:30 Pm
F (8) Pierre-Hugues Herbert/Nicolas Mahut v (5) Mike Bryan/Jack Sock

Not Before 6:00 Pm
F (1) Novak Djokovic v (3) Alexander Zverev


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59 Comments for Zverev Upends Federer, Will Face Dominant Djokovic For ATP Finals Title Sunday

AndyMira Says:

There is no doubt in my mind Nole will win[insyaallah]…99.99% in 2…

Very possible too Sascha will come out flat & mentally drained after the encounter with Roger…So,i think it’s easy 2 sets for Nole…


Django Says:

Amazing streak by Nole. Hard to know if he can keep this level.


Wog Boy Says:

Why on earth Zverev had to apologise to 37 year old and those pricks in O2?!
He has done nothing wrong, silly boy.


Wog Boy Says:

Doesn’t matter how good Nole is playing, it will be very hard to beat #4 soon to be #3 player in the world twice in the same week, as it is hard to stay fully focused in five consecutive matches against top 10 players.
Zverev is in with a good chance to win, after beating 37 years old his confidence will be much higher than in his RR match vs Nole.


chris ford1 Says:

80% Novak 20% Sasha.

As Wog Boy says, it’s no walkover.

Don’t know how long Djokovic can keep this up, either, but if he does for two years or 3 years, most of Federer’s records will fall.
He is more dangerous than ever. Now serving at a level of the top 5 servers in the ATP, has brought back the BDTL as a weapon, knows what he is doing at net and on approaches to the net, better volley and drop shot touch. And he is still a brick wall, best returner, and best at changing direction of the ball with the least errors. Even the Djokosmashes have diminished.


Margot Says:

Agree with Wog Boy, some people in the crowd were just awful. He seemed incredibly upset afterwards. Glad he’s got man of steel in his camp.
Commies saying Nole is playing better than ever and talking about him getting 21 slams. If he does, now that’ll be interesting…..


Wog Boy Says:

Nole, respect for wearing Ramonda nathaliae, you made me/us proud.


J-Kath Says:

Andy Mira: Ouch, ouch -You are very brave to forecast after the “thrashing” we got yesterday….hiccup, hiccup (have U had a secret word with RZ and U’re not telling?).

Margot/Wogboy: Crowd were disgusting.


Wog Boy Says:

Margot, they are overreacting, I don’t see that happening nor I see why it has to happen.
Nole proved what he had to prove, he is not obsessed with records.
I’ll tell you what a good friend of mine (previously mentioned solicitor), who follows only WTA and blonde Russian players (maybe because of his Lebanese background:) told me during Nole’s visit to “la la land” and after realising how upset I was with that:

“Novak achieved everything he set to achive when he started playing tennis and much more, he didn’t achieve only what you wanted him to achieve.”
I felt really bad after that and that’s exactly how my friend wanted me to feel…bloody solicitors;)


Giles Says:

AM. You use the word “ insyallah” very loosely. Lol. You should use the word when you really need to otherwise it becomes meaningless imo.


Margot Says:

Wog Boy: they are speculating of course but I also think they are genuinely appreciative of the standard of Nole’s game at the mo. To come back after injury and pepeitis and to be playing like this, is remarkable.
Kath: same thing happened to Andy at the O2 v Fed. It was the year he’d won his first slam, I think. Every double fault, miss hit and UE was greeted with cheers, shouts of joy and cow bells.
It was shocking and so disrespectful of Andy in his home city. I was there.


AndyMira Says:

Giles….What do u mean “loosely”?

2ndly…I use the word “Insyaallah” coz i’m human being & not God Giles….All i know is what i feel inside my head & heart…and gave my prediction..And i can’t straight out say “Nole will win in 2″ coz i don’t know whether Nole will win or not….and i said “Insyaallah” coz i want to give that power back to Allah…coz as a Muslim,we believe only Allah knows everythings…And Insyaallah meant…”If Allah willing”…

We muslims use word Insyaallah every single minutes of the day if circumstances arise Giles…For example,if a friend ask me to meet next week,i will say insyaallah,coz we don’t know what’s going to happen in the mean time,whether we will get sick..or die..or something happen before then…also i can’t say “I will” coz if something happen & i can’t meet with my friend,i will be sinned coz i already make promises & broken it…And by saying insyaallah i will not be sin if i broken that promises….so,it’s all down to Allah’s law Giles..


Margot Says:

Interesting AM because some Christians say, “God willing.” Not all the time, but if there’s a bit of doubt about something.


AndyMira Says:

JK…..Hahaha..Brave?I don’t know whether i am brave or not…All i know is that,for me Nole is a level ahead of Sascha in almost every department..xcept age…

As impressive as Sascha was against Roger,to me he don’t have what Novak has…or if he has it,still lacking compared to Novak…such as court craft,skills,varieties on court,patient,anticipation skills,sharpness..and most importantly mental strength…All those quality will separate this 2…Also, Novak is not Roger…I think Nole will give a free lesson to the kid today..Precious lesson…


AndyMira Says:

Oh!Really M?


Giles Says:

Come on AZ, insyallah!


J-Kath Says:

Margot: That would have made me spitting mad….good job I wasn’t there…I’d have to be constrained/physically removed from the Arena….

A-M: Go, girl go! I hope Novak will win – not that I dislike Sasha….and he has time on his side.


Margot Says:

Kath: I was really upset for Andy and also “spitting mad.”
Never seen anything like it TBH.


AndyMira Says:

Haaaaa!!….That’s right Giles!!Ohohohohhoo!!

Hahahaha…Thank u JK!…Actually i don’t mind if sascha win as well….I would love to see him win…He certainly has a chance
& deserve a win too…It’s just that,i feel… Novak with his incredible form atm is very hard to stop…He’s like a freight train that already reach a maximum speed..and will stampede everyone/anything on it’s path…How can anyone stop that?


AndyMira Says:

M & JK….I was really surprised too to see how the crowd react to sascha win last nite…I mean,it happened at Wimbledon…Let alone NY!!…And all of them were Roger fans!This became a pattern now…What happen??What makes them became so bold & rude now??


Madmax Says:

No one should apologise to anyone for winning. This is sport. The Winner takes it all!

At least Federer had the good grace to separate himself from the fans, yet the thing is, it is normal, the knives are out when Federer is playing, when Novak is playing, when Andy is playing. Fans are partisan and so they should be.

Roger Federer leaps to Alexander Zverev’s defence after ball boy controversy – that’s why Federer is absolute class in situations like these. ESPN, a class source too. Well done to all.

http://www.espn.com/tennis/story/_/id/25303888/roger-federer-leaps-alexander-zverev-defence-atp-finals-controversy

Zverev will learn. He is young. He will learn.


Madmax Says:

it is only those of you here who want to paint all fans the same and taint roger with this. It is you who are worse than the Federer fans. So, be quiet and SSSSshhhhhhhhhh. Look at yourselves first before you judge others.


Madmax Says:

I am proud to be a federer fan. I have watched him play many times at the O2, watched rafa play there, novak play there, Andy play there. IIt is a fantastic atmosphere at this venue, so for those of you who think you would be quiet and not get into the atmosphere, you are fooling yourselves. It really is a fire of passions. Completely understandable.

This was a close match. Down to the wire in both sets. And with Federer leading in the second set tie break, emotions run high. Fans are fans. Boos are boos, they can both withstand this and certainly Zverev, the young pretender no more. He will learn and he will evolve and rise from this.

People love him already.


J-Kath Says:

Madmax: It’s the crowd that we’re “spitting mad” at re. Andy and also Sasha – I don’t think anyone blames Roger.


Margot Says:

Mad Max: my post @ 3.51 am “Some people in the crowd….”


Margot Says:

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/tennis/atptour/9671645/Roger-Federer-fans-leave-home-favourite-Andy-Murray-feeling-unloved-during-ATP-World-Tour-Finals-contest.html

I was there. It was horrible. This report is mild, however it does say, “They were hard pressed to make themselves heard, however, above the remorseless Federer clamour…..you could close your eyes and imagine that London was some strange town called Rogerville, where all paid obeisance to their master’s brilliance.”
Andy did not deserve that. Not in his own country. Never.


Margot Says:

Wow! Sascha has come to play. Takes first set 6-4.
His first serve % is 88. That’s astonishing.


FedExpress Says:

First set Zverev

Nole broken for the first time this tournament.


Daniel Says:

Djoko’s FH timing was impecable untill that 4-5 game 30-30 where he missed 2 to get broken. Zverev impressively open with 3 aces than close 6-4.

Novak still has all the tools to win it in three. But if Zevrev indeed wins his biggest title, hope he gest a Slam next year. About time!


Van Persie Says:

Zverev is superior from baseline and on serve today.


Daniel Says:

Djoko 0% point won second serve in set 2. That is bizarreand why he is losing second set and the match.


Van Persie Says:

Zverev has to hold serve only in this set and he wins. Do not see him losing his nerve today.


Van Persie Says:

MP for Zverev on Djoko’s serve


Van Persie Says:

and Zverev wins this.
Well deserved. Really looks like a future Nr. 1. Can he brig this in BO 5 next year?
Djoko’s level dropped today and Zverev was much better then he was on Wednesday


Daniel Says:

Wow, what a point to win. Great tourney for him. Now only thing missing are Slams, which soon will come.

For Djoko, losing 2 back to back finals for young players. Maybe his dominance won’t be that big next year. But as ling as he wins Slams, I’ll bet he is happy.

Another Fed record lives another year. The years end #1 Djoko tied and #1 weeks will be on the line. He has at least 30 more weeks sure and depending on how next year holds he can end #3 with only Sampras and Fed ahead of him.


Margot Says:

Wow! Who saw that coming? Sascha Zverev has arrived. Along with Stephanos and KK. This generation is leap frogging over Dimitrov and co., and good luck to them. Can’t wait for next year.
Nole looked knackered, a completely different player from the past week and a totally different player who previously whopped Sascha. Ah Nole just saying Sascha played much better this match.


Van Persie Says:

Do not see Djoko winning tournament after tournament next year either, but he can win a few big ones for sure

A shame he did not make it today, expected Zverev to play much better, but did not expect Djoko’s level to drop.
Amazing year for Nole with Wimbly and UO , career master sweep in his bag + Nr. 1 at the end of this year


chris ford1 Says:

Shame Djokovic put on a tennis clinic for the ATP Championships only to stumble at the finish. It’s happened to him before he more than earns his right to play for a big title but yet underperforms or fails to rise to the elevated level his final foe throws into the last match. Most notably, Stan’s thumping him in the 2015 French Open Final. Wimbledon 2013 after the del Potro semi, we saw a low energy, even diffident Djokovic show up against Andy until he remembered who he was in the last game. But it was too late then.
It’s tennis, it’s sport, I said 80-20 odds before this started, never guaranteed a sure winner in any match at the top level, part of the reason why gamblers (and bookies) love sport so…But the aura Djokovic gives off is he didn’t exactly eat a raw horse’s heart or tofu equivalent to feed his warrior mentality in some of these Big Match losses.


Giles Says:

It’s turned out to be a good day after all!
Well done AZ.


FedExpress Says:

Zverev is way ahead of Kyrgios, Cockinakis, Thiem and next gen players.


Wog Boy Says:

Congratulations to Zverev for winning WTF, I fully expected that to happen, as VP said and Nole himself acknowledged, Zverev wasn’t at his best in the first match and Nole’s level had to drop.

Congratulations to Nole for fantastic second part of the year and finishing the year as No1e.


Giles Says:

AM. My “ insyallah” worked. 😊😊


Giles Says:

Well done Lendl.


J-Kath Says:

Andy-Mira and VP:

Hugs – Novak came back from interstellar space to being human…
next test – Grand Slam for Sasha & Novak….if they meet there, then I’d go for Novak.


skeezer Says:

Congrats Z! Way to go in making Djoker not play his best ;)


Wog Boy Says:

AM,
“Insyaallah” is Arabic for “God willing” all Arabs of both religion are using it, it is not exclusive for Islam neither is exclusive for Christians. If you go to any Arab church(Maronite, Melkite or Orthodox) you will hear them using it or if you listen christian Arabs talking to each other in Arabic you will hear it all the time.

We are using it always for exactly the same reason you mentioned, for something that we don’t know if it is going to happen but we want it to happen (Ako Bog da), only God knows if it is going to happen and God is Allah, just on different languages.

The way you are using is exactly how it should be used, whether you Muslim or Christian… but it wasn’t to be;)


skeezer Says:

Ad point, 1rst game 2nd set to break Djoker. Friggin awesome play by Z. Well done pardner!


J-Kath Says:

Wog Boy to A-M: Ditto – I spent a couple of years in the Arab World and also worked with refugees in Glasgow…and God is Allah and Inshallah and is equivalent to “Go with God” as well as wishing positive hopes and expectations.


Humble Rafa Says:

Baby Alex is only 13 years old. Imagine when he grows up.


skeezer Says:

Amazing tourney by Z. Beat Fed in a tough one and then beat Djoker in an easier one. The kid is becoming “special”.


AndyMira Says:

WB & JK!….Thank u so much for your info….Really really loved to read it about “insyaallah” from your guys POV!…Thanks guys!

WB…Sorry bout Novak…But i know u r already more than happy with what Novak achieve the 2nd half of this season…But as a friend,i still wanna give my commies…Hope u don’t mind WB….


AndyMira Says:

Giles!…U goof!Hehehe….U know,As soon as i woke up..the 1st thought that came to my mind…”Oh my God!…Giles’s insyaallah is worked!…And mine is not!!…Hahahaha…

Congrats to u Giles!And to Sascha as well…I can’t believe he’s been able to beat 2 GOATS B2B!!…Oh wow!!…And we’re talking about the in form Nole here!…All stats & odds were pointed to Nole!…That’s what more impressive!…But yeah!…It’s not meant for Nole this year..It’s meant for Sascha….But,if i have to make a pick again…i still will pick Nole!Hehehe….I have so much for respect this man’s ability & greatness…Just like i can’t pick against Rafa or Roger anywhere!


chris ford1 Says:

Inshallah is “God willing” and reflects the persistent belief that Allah is the causal agent of all “not a leaf moves in the wind but for the Will of Allah”. The East, and tradition of Western causality does not see every little thing happening under the direct control of God, like each moment in the flight of a lone mosquito – but of laws and math and karma behind it. God is beseeched by sailors outside Islam as an intervenor when waves get too high, not as consciously creating each wave, high or low. Islam is very different.
It’s not all nice Religion of Peace stuff either when “God willing” is used by Islamist fundamentalists, because every bomb and bullet finding their mark is reflected in Muslim hope of ‘Inshallah’ directing it to be so and kill – comes from that philosophy as well.
Of course, many times it is said in goodwill hoping good things on people…..”good crops, Djokovic to do better next time, for the son to be favored in business and in love”….but it goes with ill will nicely, as well.


Humble Rafa Says:

I have called Pepe to check on the status of “Peace”. If he wants to spread world peace, this Egg Lover train is causing me a lot of pain. He better get the train back on track.


Colin Says:

Is this a tennis forum or a discussion about religion?

Chris Ford, you seem to think that the Islamist world view is special insofar as it “goes with ill will nicely”. I’d say Christianity in the shape of Britain and America exhibited ill will during several centuries of slave trading. When, in the early 19th Century, there began to be discussions about the morality of slavery, Christian ministers were lining up to justify it on Biblical grounds.

To this day, fundamentalists, particularly in America, regard the Bible as an entirely Christian book, including the Old Testament. This is crazy – how can you have Christianity before Christ? – but this is what they do believe. The Old Testament is a ghastly book. As Alfred Whitehead said, the various writers who were trying to make sense of the world they lived in, looked around them and saw a world ruled by brutal and capricious despots, so they naturally assumed God was another such. and as portrayed in the Old Testament He certainly is.

The most spectacular evil act in history – the nuclear bombing of deliberately chosen civilian targets in Japan – was carried out by America, which was, and remains, a highly Christian country. Donald Trump’s main concern is his own wealth and comfort, but he never disavowed religion and took the oath in the usual way when he became President. Like previous Presidents. including the Catholic Kennedy, he keenly supports Israel’s grabbing of Arab land – grabbing which Israel justifies on the grounds that the land was given to them by God a couple of thousand years ago.

Trump still believes there are places in London effectively under Sharia law, where the police are scared to go. This is rubbish, as I (the least heroic person you could meet) travel every so often to an electronics shop near Aldgate East, a tube station that was closed for a while in the wake of the London bombings of 2012. Like the vast majority of Muslims in the UK, the people who run that shop are just trying to earn a living.

As a well known author put it, religion poisons everything.


Margot Says:

Colin: AM and I have gone to the “Off Topic” probably the correct place to discuss this at length.


Van Persie Says:

Colin,

Agree to all, what you said, with one exception: “religion poisons everything.”
The religion is not the problem! The politicians, churches and leaders are only using the religion (they did it also in the past, see the crusades) in order to manipulate the masses.
Lately, as the people are not that religious anymore, some countries are using the “spreading of democracy” motivation, in order to justify some actions.
Would you say in this case: democracy poisons everything, as well?

I did never read the Koran , have to say.
Did not read the entire Bible as well, but from what I did read, there is no sentence there, which invites to terrorism or to war! And I heard the same about the Koran.


Van Persie Says:

“The politicians, churches and leaders are only using the religion (they did it also in the past, see the crusades) in order to manipulate the masses.”

and I did something silly here, as the leaders are not even using the religion, they are using fake interpretations from the Bible, Koran, etc…


Van Persie Says:

Have to apologize for discussing this on a tennis tread , but I will link this to tennis now :)

My favorite metaphor from the bible : doing a Lazarus. My pov , such =great metaphors are used in the bible, as we, people, we dio love miracles, super heroes. It is in our blood ;) that’s what Nole did this year, a Lazarus. He was dead, blind, deaf last year, we remember.
Yes I should have to thank Vajda, Gritsch and so one, but Nole allowed them to help him :)


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