It’s a new year but really some things never change, even in tennis. For example today, Roger Federer once again showed who’s boss hammering Baby Fed Grigor Dimitrov 6-2, 6-2 in the Brisbane semifinals.
Dimitrov, who’s 10 years younger than Roger, just hasn’t found the answer against the guy he’s copied his game after. I’m not sure he ever will, nor if he really wants to – Roger’s Team 8 agency represents Dimitrov further blurring the lines between the two.
Federer’s win sets up a finale against Milos Raonic who edged US Open runner-up Kei Nishikori 6-7(4), 7-6(4), 7-6(4). Federer is also gunning for an historic 1000th career match win Sunday.
“I hope it’s tomorrow, clearly,” Federer said. “It’s a really big number, no doubt about it. Love to get it tomorrow, especially in the finals in an ATP event where most of my wins have come.
“If not tomorrow, I hope it happens at the Australian Open. Been a lot of the matches, a lot of toughening out plays,” he said. “I don’t know if it’s a goal, but it would definitely be an incredible milestone to reach.’
With his big game, Raonic can certainly pose a threat, and he just beat Federer in Paris last fall.
“I got to serve well. That’s always been a key,” said Raonic who is 1-7 against the Swiss. “Last few matches I started poorly. I would get broken right in my first service game, which is not the way to really go about things, especially against a top player and especially against Roger.
“So I got to keep that pressure on him and then sort of step up when I can create my opportunities. I think that’s a good place to start.”
After coming up just short last year to Lleyton Hewitt, I think Federer gets his Brisbane title and No. 1000. And he keeps the old guys ahead of NextGen.
In Doha, Tomas Berdych continues to be Tomas Berdych. That is someone who just cannot (or just doesn’t care to) beat the top players in big matches. In this case, today he fell to David Ferrer 6-4, 7-5 in the Doha final. Ferrer is a great, well-respected player, but someone with the weaponry of a Berdych, who’s beaten the Spaniard on five occasions, should win that match. Yet once again he falls short.
“First of all, it’s a disappointment to lose the final,” said Berdych who had won his last two against Ferrer. “But on the other hand, it’s been a very solid week. It’s been a couple of good matches. I was not able to execute the right way (today), but I think it’s a good start for me.”
Glad he thinks it was a good week! But congrats to Ferrer for putting together an even BETTER week!
“I’m very happy,” said Ferrer. “I put in hard work this preseason. It’s special winning this tournament. I was ready to play tonight’s match against Berdych – a Top 10 player.”
In Chennai, Stan Wawrinka will try to make it two straight titles there as he goes up against World No. 156 Aljaz Bedene who saved four match points today against Roberto Bautista Agut to make his first final.
“It’s my first final,” said Bedene, who had to qualify for the event. “It feels really good. All the hard work I’ve put into it in the preseason. I’m excited to be playing tomorrow. I’m playing really well now. I’m looking forward to it.”
Stan beat up on the rising David Goffin 7-5, 6-3. So a good start for the season for Stan, and also for Federer, Raonic and Ferrer!
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