Roger Federer Downs Wawrinka In Four Set Epic To Reach Roland Garros Semi-Finals - UBITENNIS
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Roger Federer Downs Wawrinka In Four Set Epic To Reach Roland Garros Semi-Finals

Roger Federer reached his first Roland Garros Semi-Final for seven years with a four set win over Stan Wawrinka.

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Roger Federer (@ATP_Tour - Twitter)

Roger Federer defeated Stan Wawrinka 7-6(4) 4-6 7-6(5) 6-4 to reach the Roland Garros Semi-Finals.

 

In a battle of the former champions, Federer downed Wawrinka in four epic sets to reach the last four in Paris and end his compatriot’s renaissance.

The win means it’s Federer’s first Roland Garros semi-final since 2012, where he will restore his rivalry with Rafael Nadal.

As the 11-time champion downed Kei Nishikori 6-1 6-1 6-3 in convincing fashion to set up another meeting in the Fedal rivalry.

In their 26th meeting of their career, it was Federer who made the brightest start on return as he looked to break his compatriot early on.

However there was a reason why Wawrinka came through a five hour battle to reach the quarter-finals and showed it with some clutch serving to save four break points in the opening set.

In particular the serve down the middle helped the 2015 champion to get out of trouble and stay in the set as Federer continued to ease through his service games.

With the 24th seed not being as effective on serve, a first set tiebreak loomed after Federer proved too passive on break points.

In the end though a poor backhand from the 34 year-old allowed Federer to seize control in a crucial moment as two accurate sealed the tiebreak 7-4.

Despite the set lead, break points continued to haunt the 20 time grand slam champion as he wasted three more at the start of the second set.

That often means that when your opponent gets an opportunity of his own, he often takes it and this was exactly the case.

A first opportunity and the first break of the match went to Wawrinka in the third game with a loopy forehand cross-court winner.

Frustration started to set in for Federer, who couldn’t offer any real offence on return as Wawrinka remained better on the big points.

A tough hold at the end sealed the set for Wawrinka as the 2009 champion lost his first set of Roland Garros with the match level at one set all.

After failing to convert an eighth break point, Federer was starting to lose the baseline duels with more aggression needed from him.

As a result Wawrinka started to feel more comfortable from the back of the court and broke on his second break point after a missed backhand volley from Federer.

One thing we know about the world number three though is he never stops finding solutions and some slow returns caused Wawrinka problems.

Uncharacteristic errors on the forehand saw Wawrinka hand Federer the break as it was ninth time lucky for the 37 year-old.

The next few games proved to be the most important part of the match as Wawrinka was forced to save two set points with some bold serving and a stunning backhand down the line.

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Both men played their best tennis of the match as a third set tiebreak approached. Just like the first tiebreak it was Federer, who had the edge with some ridiculous net play.

After a mini-fightback from 5-1 down, Wawrinka couldn’t add the finishing touches as a wide serve to the Stan’s backhand sealed a 2 sets to 1 lead for the former world number one.

Both players looked to dictate the fourth set as Federer continued to waste break points on big moments which saw Wawrinka remain bold on serve.

After Federer held for 3-3 play was suspended for an hour as thunderstorm was brewing in Paris which saw frustration and laughter from both men.

https://twitter.com/Eurosport_UK/status/1135936099447181313

In the restart Federer started with nerves and passive play but eventually converted one of the many break points that eluded him to break for the second time.

A nervy hold of serve at the end saw the former champion into his first Roland Garros semi-final since 2012 as Wawrinka’s renaissance ends.

Next up for Federer is another meeting with 11 time champion Rafael Nadal.

 

 

 

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Daniil Medvedev Searching For Confidence Boost Ahead Of Wimbledon

The two-time Grand Slam finalist says he is not the same player as he was two years ago when he last played Wimbledon.

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When it comes to playing on the grass this year Daniil Medvedev admits that the biggest issue for him might concern the mental side of the sport as opposed to the physical side.

 

The world No.2 kicked-off his grass swing last week in Halle where he was stunned in the first round by Germany’s Jan-Lennard Struff. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic disrupting the Tour in 2020, that was the first time the Russian had played a match on the surface in almost two years. Short on matches, Medvedev is back in action this week in Mallorca after taking a wildcard into the tournament.

“I like to play on grass, I just need to get some confidence in my game on the surface, because we didn’t play [on it] for two years. Two years ago, I was not the same player as I am right now,” Medvedev told atptour.com. “It is tough for me to say where I see myself, but I know I can play very good on this surface. I just need to find the right balance.”

Since he last played at Wimbledon, Medvedev surged on the ATP Tour by winning six titles with all of them being on a hardcourt. Furthermore, he also reached the final of the US Open in 2019 and the Australian Open this year. He is the first player outside of the Big Four to be ranked in the world’s top two since July 2005.

Despite his previous success on the grass, Medvedev admits he remains wary about playing on the surface and the conditions he may face.

“When I started playing on grass, I played in Challengers and even in [ATP] Tour tournaments on the outside courts, not on the central courts, and I can tell that the central courts are quite slow,” he said. “Especially the match I played with Gilles Simon at Queen’s [Club], we had rallies of 40 shots every second point. That is what makes it a little bit tougher.
“When I practise on practice courts, I feel like I am playing so good as the ball is so fast. Then I come onto the centre court to play the match, and the ball just stops after the bounce, and you have to adapt your game, so it can be tough. But I know I can play really well on grass.”

In Mallorca Medvedev has a bye in the first round. His opening match will be against either South Africa’s Lloyd Harris or France’s Corentin Moutet.

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Unseeded Ugo Humbert Becomes First Player In Over A Decade To Win Halle On Debut

The 22-year-old fired nine aces and 29 winners to claim his first ATP 500 title.

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image via https://twitter.com/ATPHalle

France’s Ugo Humbert has clinched his maiden ATP title on the grass after defeating Andrey Rublev in straight sets at the Noventi Open in Halle.

 

Humbert remained unbroken throughout his 6-3, 7-6(4), win over the Russian fourth seed who has won more matches on the ATP Tour than any other player since the start of 2020 (74). The Frenchman was particularly impressive behind serve where he won 83% of his first service points and 55% on his second. It is the first time he has beaten Rublev on the Tour after losing to him on two previous occasions in 2019 (Monte Carlo) and 2020 (St. Petersburg).

“It’s incredible,” said Humbert. “The best victory of my career. I’m very proud because it wasn’t easy, I was a little but tired today but I tried to stay focused on each point. It’s very nice.”

The triumph concludes what has been a marathon week in Halle for the 22-year-old. En route to the final he had to come through four three-set matches where he scored wins over Sam Querrey, Alexander Zverev, Sebastian Korda and Felix-Auger Aliassime. Becoming only the second player in Halle’s 28-year history to have reached the final by playing only three-set matches.

Meanwhile, runner-up Rublev paid tribute to his opponent following their clash. The world No.7 is now 1-2 in finals played so far this season after winning Rotterdam before losing to Stefanos Tsitsipas in Monte Carlo. To put that into perspective, in 2020 he won all six finals he played in.

“I have often told my coach that you play in an incredible way,” he said. “You have everything to be a very great player. So keep working, doing everything you do. You play very well, you have incredible shots. I wish you a great career.”

Humbert, who won two ATP titles last year in Auckland and Antwerp, is the first player to win Halle on the debut since 2010. On that occasion Lleyton Hewitt prevailed over Roger Federer in the final. He is now projected to rise to a ranking high of 25 on Monday when the ATP standings are officially updated.

The Frenchman will be hoping that he can continue his winning streak heading to Wimbledon where he reached the fourth round back in 2019. His best ever result in a Grand Slam to date.

https://twitter.com/TennisTV/status/1406612207086059528

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David Goffin Out Of Wimbledon Following Halle Accident

It has been reported that the unfortunate injury he suffered is ‘more serious’ than a sprain.

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David Goffin has been forced to withdraw from Wimbledon after suffering an ankle injury during the Noventi Open earlier this week.

 

The former top 10 player was taking on Corentin Moutet in Halle where he slipped on the grass and subsequently hurt his right ankle. Forcing the Belgian to retire from the match at the start of the third set. Providing an update on Goffin’s health, agent Martin Roux said he is unsure how long he will be absent from the Tour for.

“Yes, David has officially withdrawn from Wimbledon following his ankle injury in Halle. For the moment we do not know more about the exact duration of unavailability, ” Roux told lesoir.be. “He is of course disappointed to miss a Grand Slam tournament, especially since he had recovered well on grass before his injury. “

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Elaborating further, Roux confirmed Goffin’s injury is ‘more serious’ than a sprain and tests are ongoing to assess the extent of the damage which has been caused to the ankle. It is not the first time he has suffered a freak accident on the court. During the 2018 Rotterdam Open he hurt his eye after a tennis ball rebounded into his face, forcing him to pull out of Marseille and Indian Wells that year.

“David told me that it was more serious than a minor sprain, after exams in Belgium.”Roux added. “The ankle has not yet deflated (stopped swelling). David realizes that ice and bandages won’t be enough to play. The ligaments must be affected in one way or another. The idea is to do new exams at the end of the week in order to then have a healing protocol, especially since after Wimbledon the Olympic Games will arrive quickly. These are now his next goals. “

The 30-year-old has achieved a win-loss record of 14-13 so far in 2021 and won his fifth ATP title in Montpellier. He has also reached the semi-finals in Antalya and quarter-finals in Monte Carlo. However, recently Goffin has struggled on the Tour with Halle being the fifth tournament in a row where he has failed to win back-to-back matches.

Goffin is currently ranked 13th in the world.

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