Novak Djokovic rolled into the semifinals in London on Wednesday. As the round-robin stage continued at the ATP Finals, Djokovic defeated youngster Alexander Zverev 6-4, 6-1.
Djokovic, who has won 34 of his last 36 matches, will take on Marin Cilic on Friday. Cilic put the Serb through to the semifinals for an eighth time by coming from a set down to beat John Isner 6-7(2), 6-3, 6-4.
Cilic has just one win in nine at the event, and looked in trouble again after dropping the first set to the debutant Isner. But Cilic benefited from two double faults from Isner handing over two breaks, one at 3-4 in the second and another to start the third.
“I had to just stay patient, just stay focused and I felt that I played really great tennis from the second set and the third set as well,” Cilic said. “I’m really pleased with the win.”
Isner, 0-2, is still alive in the event but has to beat Zverev on Friday and Djokovic oust Cilic.
“I think he just started seeing the ball better,” Isner said. “Maybe I tipped some of my pitches. But he started getting on me a lot there.”
On Thursday, 6-time champion Roger Federer is back against Kevin Anderson in a rematch of the South African’s epic win at Wimbledon.
“I don’t think I’ll go into the match thinking too much of it,” Federer said. “I think I have enough things to focus on from my own side, from my own game, to make sure I play a good match against him here in the next match.
“I’m really excited to get a chance to play him again, to be honest. I’ve played well against him in the past. I hope I can reproduce something like that.”
If Anderson and Nishikori both win, Federer is out.
Also, Kei Nishikori clashes with Dominic Thiem. The 0-2 Austrian has to win to have a chance to make the weekend.
“First of all, I have to get my tennis back. I’ll try that tomorrow. If I don’t get it back, I don’t need to watch for the other results because then I will also lose my third match. I have to get my good tennis back,” Thiem said. “I really want to play a good match. Doesn’t matter if it’s the last one here or not.”
Nishikori leads Thiem 3-1 including a win in Vienna last month.
“It’s different surface,” Nishikori said reflecting back. “This one is much quicker. He’s obviously a good player. He done really well this year. So, I’m sure it’s going to be a tough one. I got to play, I have to raise my level for sure.”
THURSDAY ATP FINALS LONDON SCHEDULE
Centre Court 12:00 Noon
RR 4 Jamie Murray/Bruno Soares v (9) Alt Henri Kontinen/John Peers
Not Before 2:00 Pm
RR 6 Dominic Thiem v 7 Kei Nishikori
Not Before 6:00 Pm
RR 2 Juan Sebastian Caba/lRobert Farah v 6 Raven Klaasen/Michael Venus
Not Before 8:00 Pm
RR 2 Roger Federer v 4 Kevin Anderson
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