Federer Delights; Rafa v Zverev Saturday at Australian Open
by Staff | January 20th, 2017, 8:50 am
  • 129 Comments

No. 17 seed Roger Federer delighted fans in the final night match at the Australian Open on Friday, upsetting No. 10 seed Tomas Berdych 6-2, 6-4, 6-4.
ADHEREL
“Upset” may be a strong term for the sixth win in a row for the Swiss over the Czech, but in the end it was a remarkably easy victory for the 35-year-old who missed the Olympics, US Open and end months of 2016 to heal injury.

“I didn’t expect this as such, to be honest, especially not this kind of a scoreline,” said the four-time Australian Open champion. “Especially not having to save any break points, just always rolling on the serve. That was a big surprise to me. I think it was a great mental test for me to see if I could stay in the match — point for point. I was able to do that. That’s where I’m just really happy that I was able to deliver that.”

Federer, who received a standing ovation afterwards from the Aussie fans, will next meet No. 5 seed Kei Nishikori, who beat qualifier Lukas Lacko 6-4, 6-4, 6-4.

“For sure it’s not going to be easy [facing Federer],” Nishikori said. “He was playing great tennis today. I watched only a few points. But it’s always great to play Roger. It’s a big challenge for me. I’m just happy to play him because I think we needed him on the tour. I’m happy to see him back 100 percent.”

Federer has won four of his six meetings against Nishikori.

“I’m a big fan of his game,” Federer said. “He’s got one of the best backhands out there. I love how he can crush it down the line or crosscourt. He’s got wonderful second serve returns. He’s fast on his legs. Strong in his mind. I know how tough he is as the match goes along. He finds his range and his rhythm, he’s tough to stop.”

Brit Daniel Evans was also an upset winner on Friday, putting No. 27-seeded Aussie Bernard Tomic out of the tournament 7-5, 7-6(2), 7-6(3). His reward is a fourth-round meeting with No. 12 seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who beat No. 23 Jack Sock 7-6(4), 7-5, 6-7(8), 6-3.

World No. 1 Andy Murray continued his steady march through the draw, dismissing No. 31 Sam Querrey 6-4, 6-2, 6-4. He will next meet unseeded German Mischa Zverev, who beat Tunisia’s Malek Jaziri 6-1, 4-6, 6-3, 6-0.

“The start of the match was hard, Sam came out serving big,” Murray said. “He was really going for his shots. The end of that first set was important. He had a break point at 3-4. When I saved that and broke the next game, the momentum was with me. I started to serve a bit better and put a lot more returns back in play after that. I thought I moved much better today than I did in the first two matches, which is really positive for me.”

No. 4 Stanislas Wawrinka defeated No. 29 Viktor Troicki 3-6, 6-2, 6-2, 7-6(7), and in the fourth round he will meet the Kyrgios-killer Andreas Seppi, who edged Belgian Steve Darcis 4-6, 6-4, 7-6(1), 7-6(2).

Wawrinka failed to serve out the match twice, then closed it out in the fourth-set breaker.

“It was not always the best tennis, but I’m happy to won the match,” he said. “That’s all that counts. But tough conditions, quite windy, not easy to really play well, have a good rhythm.”

Saturday’s slate of highlight matches in Melbourne include (9) Rafael Nadal vs. (24) Alexander Zverev, (15) Grigor Dimitrov vs. (18) Richard Gasquet, (6) Gael Monfils vs. (32) Philipp Kohlschreiber, (20) Ivo Karlovic vs. (11) David Goffin, (3) Milos Raonic vs. (25) Gilles Simon, and the all-Spanish (13) Roberto Bautista Agut vs. (21) David Ferrer.


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129 Comments for Federer Delights; Rafa v Zverev Saturday at Australian Open

skeezer Says:

That was the very best Fed has played a match in a long time. Striking his returns, hitting lines, smacking his FH ( & BH ). Bird at times has been tough on Fed by bludgeoning him, but today he got our bludgeoned by the Maestro. Awesome to watch.
Can he back it up and do the same to Nishi? We’ll see…


RZ Says:

Wow, wasn’t expecting that but I’m always thrilled when Fed turns on maestro mode. I suspect he’ll have a tougher time against Nishikori, though. In recent years Fed has had trouble maintaining consistency from one match to another, and Kei has more ground game and better movement than Berdych.


RZ Says:

Also, props to Dan the Man for continuing his run!


Tennis Vagabond Says:

Just saw the last half of the third, but wow. That was a Fed-fan’s dream. I love when he swats from one corner to another. Net game looked amazing too. He looked very aggressive, like he wasn’t going to give Berdych 2 or 3 chances to get in the groove for his missiles.

Some great matches on tonight/tomorrow, and then, looking forward greatly to Fed/Kei.


rognadfan Says:

Definitely didn’t expect such an elevation in his game last night.
He seemed to make a really conscious effort to be more aggressive on returns. Hope he keeps that up. To me his BH was off the charts, especially after watching those rusty strokes in the previous couple rounds. Next one will be very different one. Hope he keeps this level with a guy much more consistent than Berdych on the baseline.


steve-o Says:

Absolute masterclass from Federer. He won 95% of his first serve points, that’s his highest-ever percentage in a Grand Slam match. He stayed very aggressive, moved oh-so-smoothly and hit beautiful DTL backhands. Lots of net play, not a lot of long grinding points.

Nishikori will be a different opponent, much more running and baseline tennis. It’s a good test to see if he’s ready to face Murray. C’mon Roger!


Nits Says:

Zverev is a real deal no antics stable head super talent giving Rafael a tough time from start.


Anto Says:

Not a good start for Rafa already a break down


J.S. Says:

COME ON RAFA!!!!


J.S. Says:

I still say RAFA in 4!!!


Anto Says:

I hope Rafa ups his level, which I am sure he can. Else he is gonna lose.


Anto Says:

If Rafa wins second set its probably gonna end in 5 and winner can be anybody. But if Rafa loses it then its probably gonna end in 4 with Rafa losing (in 3rd set Zverev gonna have a let down)


nits Says:

It’s the two free points that zverev gets easily on his serve is causing the problem


Anto Says:

Even with Zverev hitting this much second serves Nadal can’t do anything about it


Anto Says:

Finally Nadal breaks. Courtesy to Zverev’s some bad shots.


Anto Says:

Now can Nadal serve it out. I am not sure


Anto Says:

Yup he did it Nadal back one level.


Anto Says:

Hope nadal can hold and send this to a tiebreaker. Even if he did, I dont have much hope that he would win the tiebreaker.


AndyMira Says:

Yes Anto…Rafa’s not good on TB lately..but,there’s still hope..


Anto Says:

Tiebreaker it is.


Anto Says:

Mini break for sasha


Anto Says:

Rafa still playing tentatively at times.


Anto Says:

Now rafa has a mini break. Can he hold it


Anto Says:

Nope he cant


Anto Says:

Sasha playing fearlessly


Anto Says:

Set point for sasha on his serve. It looks like bye bye for nadal


Anto Says:

And sasha did it. Now I dont think Nadal’s gonna win. Infact I think sasha is gonna win the next set


jatin Says:

WOW man, it was some crazy crazy hitting by zverev. What a set of tennis that was from both sides.
Can rafa make a comeback ?
Lets see..


Danica Says:

Wow, what a set point for 2:1. That was great play.


Anto Says:

Even if nadal wins this set. I dont see him winning the match.


Anto Says:

And nadal breaks.


Anto Says:

Even if I know nadal can lose this match. I can’t get to terms with that


Danica Says:

Anto, why so pessimistic?


Anto Says:

That once again losing early in a Grand Slam.


Anto Says:

Cos I have seen a lot of matches of nadal post 2014 french open. Thats why


AndyMira Says:

Anto,rafa is still not finished..and it’s very wrong of u to write him off so quickly…


Anto Says:

Ya I know its not right. Lets hope I am wrong


Danica Says:

3:0 so far in fourth. Rafa can win this. He is such a champ and fights ’til the end. I wouldn’t predict his loss yet.


Anto Says:

Thats what I love most about Rafa, he never gives up. But just by not giving up, you cannot win a match.


AndyMira Says:

That’s alright Anto,i know how u feel…But hey..rafa still look good…and still fighting and no lost look on him..that’s a good sign Anto..


AndyMira Says:

Wooooo!!What a point!!


Anto Says:

Yeah atleast thats a good sign. But still some stupid ue coming from nowhere.


Anto Says:

Also I dont think I can handle another 5 set loss. Back in his days, he was the king of 5 setters.


AndyMira Says:

Yes Anto..i think rafa will prevail today..in the end maturity and experience will make things different..at least that’s what i think..


Anto Says:

He cant even put a decent return of his first serve


Anto Says:

Nice point


Anto Says:

Wow that was nice over head backhand volley


Anto Says:

Again good point. The main problem with nadal nowadays is that he is not consistent.


Anto Says:

Now he have to hold one more time to take it to the decider. The good this about the decider is that there are no tiebreakers. :-)


AndyMira Says:

Yeah Anto…His major problem this last couple of years..injuries made him very vulnerable and doubting about his body and shots…let’s hope he can make it okay?I love his fighting spirit..But if only he’s playing aggressively and eager to find a winner..he could close out the match in just 4 sets..


Anto Says:

Missed a simple volley.


Margot Says:

I don’t know whether Rafa’s experience will triumph here or not, but the future has arrived and its looking mighty fine.


Anto Says:

Now lets see whether he can serve it out.


Anto Says:

@margot true that


Anto Says:

Finally set point arrives. Can he do it the first time?


Anto Says:

and an ace. we are moving to the decider.


jatin Says:

Game on. Amazing comeback by rafa
Gonna be an epic 5th set.


AndyMira Says:

YES!!!!!Rafa won 4th sets!!WOOOOHOOOO!!!!


Anto Says:

Btw istomin’s match against pablo carreno busta is in the 5th set and it looks like he is gonna win.


J.S. Says:

HAHA!!! we are going to 5!!! But I like this kid….
I think Rafa has this….PLEASE!!!


AndyMira Says:

And rafa breaks!!!Woooo!!


Anto Says:

Yahoo. Now he just have to hold server 5 times. Gosh its gonna be tough.


J.S. Says:

OMG I CANT TAKE IT…..GO BABY GO!!!!
What a champion!


Anto Says:

But recently even he have lost matches after being breaking first in the decider.


Anto Says:

may i am doing a lot of typos. I cant handle the pressure


Anto Says:

btw istomin won his match. I for one am happy he didn’t just lost after doing an upset.


Anto Says:

A love hold for sasha. Nadal must hold serve. He must not lower is intensity, not even a tiny bit


Anto Says:

nadal in slight trouble


Anto Says:

Its happening. what i feared.


Anto Says:

Saved one. But not sure he can do two more


Anto Says:

some gutsy shots by nadal. saved the second one


Anto Says:

its gone.


AndyMira Says:

God!rafa makes my BP skyrocketed!


Anto Says:

its just so heartbreaking to see Nadal losing a match after going up in the decider.


Anto Says:

Unitl sasha gifts a break i dont see nadal breaking him


Anto Says:

Nadal just lost a golder oppurtunity to break


Anto Says:

break nadal break


Anto Says:

nadal not doing much on his second serve


AndyMira Says:

Alex start cramping..


Anto Says:

nadal his inexperience in big matches is showing break him now


Anto Says:

please nadal break him atleast now


Anto Says:

as i said he gifts him the break. But i dont care that i just want nadal to win


AndyMira Says:

Oh,i want rafa to win but feel sorry for alex at the same time…i like this kid so much..


Anto Says:

sasha seems to be having physical troubles.


Anto Says:

his inexperience in showing now. it seems he is not fit enough to last this much time


Anto Says:

sasha save on break point with an ace


Anto Says:

wow rafa


Anto Says:

again saved another bp


Anto Says:

nadal is not capitalising on this bps


AndyMira Says:

Anto,Alex already have a 5 setter with his earlier opponents,,


Anto Says:

nice lob to bring up another bp for rafa


Anto Says:

oops it wasnt an bp


Anto Says:

awesome FDTL


AndyMira Says:

Yeah rafa don’t keep the pressure very well to alex..he can’t move much now,rafa should keep him aside to side..And what a point!!!!


AndyMira Says:

YES!!!!!!Another break!!!!


Anto Says:

yahoo. finally rafa broke


jatin Says:

Extraordinary game by rafa. Wow.. what lethal hitting. Now he has the match .
Amazing match it was


Anto Says:

Now rafa must serve out the first time itself. Else rafa might get nervous again which wont be a good thing


J.S. Says:

4-2 in the 5th – RAFA went cray!!!!


AndyMira Says:

WOOOOHOOOOO!!I told u not to write rafa off quickly Anto….Rafa won!!!


Anto Says:

Vamos Rafa.


Anto Says:

Sorry guys I should have wrote of Rafa.


Anto Says:

*should not have. Gosh these typos


AndyMira Says:

STANDING OVATION FOR THE YOUNG MAN!!HE’S AWESOME!!!!


Anto Says:

Now let me get back to work. All I did today in office was watch this match .. :-P


jatin Says:

I agree.. Zverev is definitely future world no. 1. What a game, what a player…


AndyMira Says:

Tat’s alright Anto,what’s more important is that we know now that rafa not easily crumble under big pressure anymore..To me that’s so precious..


Margot Says:

Well played Rafa. Got a very good chance of getting to the final, I’d say. Wondering if Willow will get her hoped for Andy v Rafa final. But not counting Andy’s chickens yet. EEK!
Love, love, love Zverev, what a promising young player. The best of the young bunch? :)


Giles Says:

Awesome win for Rafa!
Vamos Champ!
๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘


J.S. Says:

LOVE LOVE ZVEREV too!
But Love me some Rafa!!!! SO HAPPY!!!!


Navdeep Says:

As soon as Zverev won the 3rd set, I switched off the television. Promised myself would only see the score once the match ends,and look how it ended….. amazing.
Well-done zverev u really are something special.
RAFA….what can I say! it’s an honour being ur fan.Thank you


J-Kath Says:

My goodness – Rafa is Back. Only saw the last set but was impressed by both players.


J.S. Says:

RAONIC and SIMON could we have an upset there?? hmmmm?


Margot Says:

And Istomin backs up his win.


Daniel Says:

Almost picked this upset right in my bracquet, got Zevrev beating Nadal. Wake up and saw they went the distance with Sasha 2-1. He has time to mature still.

Nadla next gets Monfils whi won in three but we don’t know who Monfils will show up, so cab predict that.

Most likely he will play Raonic and potentially the winner of that match goes to finals. This and Dimi (will pla nect) still alive but can’t seem one of them making finals. It will beneither Raonic or Nadal.


Miles Says:

Nadal got lucky today – I thought today would reveal whether he had a chance of winning the tournament and I don’t think he does. I believe Monfils will fancy his chances and I really can’t see him getting past either Dimitrov or Thiem.

In all likelihood, Murray will reach the final and he’s a different proposition, too.


Giles Says:

Lol Miles. So what clues did you find from Rafa’s win over Zverev to suggest that he doesn’t have a chance of winning the tournament? Do tell!


skeezer Says:

First time I have watched Zverev at length. He has game, but needs more experience in his strategy on stamina and fitness. With the right team, he’ll get there. It comes with maturity. Boy he has a big game. Needs more consistency with his big serve in location and timing. Would like to see him play someone ( like Fed ) who can shorten the court, make this tall guy have to bend his knees more and come in and see how he does. Rafa basically just hung in there and wore him out, broke him down. But that is what Rafa can do with everyone at times. Big match for Rafa, he needs more confidence and can see it growing. Look out.


Okiegal Says:

These taller guys have a longer reach and not much gets past them……I agree Z is on the way up but he will have to get a handle on the fitness thingy for sure. Rafa is serving much better……..which needed to be improved…..12 aces I believe….Anyway, great win for Rafa. Gael next……GO RAFA!


Okiegal Says:

@AM…..How in the world do you manage to do commentating in two places??? Lol. Now I know where you were when you went AWOL on FB! I know you have to spread yourself around!! Crezzzzy girl!! You did save me from a heart attack or two giving me the score before I could see it….hate my TV being delayed from the action. ๐Ÿ†—


AndyMira Says:

Hey Okie…How’s my fellow commentatory in ESrafaPN Chanel.Com.Whatever’s doing today??I guess you’re a very happyyyyyyyy womennnnnnnn todayyyyyyyyy…yessssss okie?he he he he..Actuallyyyyyy i went to 2 other places when i went AWOL with u on FB…Today,i also went to TG to save Nny from a heart attack and spread my MAGIC there..Oh Thank God!My magic worked really well in 3 places today!Who would have thunk!!!he he he..


jane Says:

i’m glad dennis went another round margot; he’s playing well.
i heard that nole offered istomin the house he had rented to stay at during AO. kind… <3


J-Kath Says:

Me too Jane – it’s too disappointing when one player takes out a star and then reverts to poor play.


J-Kath Says:

Miles:

Not sure I agree re. Nadal – with the caveat that I only saw the last set – where he struck me as definitely the come-back-kid.

Daniel: Agree – either Nadal or Milos will be in final.


Okiegal Says:

@AM Your magic potion did the thing trick!!!


AndyMira Says:

@Okie….Oh!Weeelllll…weeellll…..emmm weeeellllllllll…..oh weeeelllllllll…..


Miles Says:

No, Nadal will do well get past Monfils – Alexander’s fitness cost him that match – not Nadal’s play imo.

Top story: Nadal Falls In Return, Tsitsipas Tops Medvedev At ATP Finals; Federer Tries To Stay Alive Tues.