Roger Federer will try to win his 99th career title and 10th in Halle Sunday as he takes on Borna Coric.
The heavily favored Federer was pushed a little by American qualifier Denis Kudla but the Swiss was too sharp and too strong in the end during the 7-6(1), 7-5 victory.
“I’m actually very happy, you know, it’s not easy to play here,” Federer said. “It plays pretty quick, especially when you serve well. I already felt that throughout the whole week. So, I’m happy I found a way again to win today.
Federer has now won his last 20 matches on grass, and he comes off a title just last week in Stuttgart. So things are looking very well for his Wimbledon title defense.
“I’ve never played back to back finals on grass like this in pre-leading up events before Wimbledon,” Federer added. “So, this is a first for me. I’m very happy having won Stuttgart and now making another finals here in Halle is great. I would have taken that any day a month ago. So, the comeback has been rather successful for me. I don’t have time to change anything for tomorrow.”
Coric had an easy day advancing when Roberto Bautista Agut retired at 2-3 with a hip injury. It’s Coric’s first grass final and fourth his career. He has just one previous title coming last year in Marrakech.
“I’m going to enjoy it,” Coric said of reaching the final. “I didn’t expect this at the beginning of the week. You know, today I was a little bit lucky. I’m sorry for Roberto. But I can rest a little bit now which is good. So like I said I don’t think my chances are really big but I’m going to go out there and I’m going to try to win. That’s for sure.”
Federer beat Coric in both prior meetings including a 3-set semifinal at Indian Wells in March.
“I think in that match I played almost perfect,” Coric said looking back to Indian Wells. “I think it was a great match. I was really playing good and, you know, at the end I was maybe a little bit unlucky and again he showed us why he is No. 1 in the world. He played very good in the most important points. So, I don’t think I need to change anything. I need to try to play on that level which is not going to be easy for sure because I think that’s my best match of the season by far which I played. So, I’m just going to try to play on the same level.”
The Croat had just two career prior wins on grass entering the week.
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