Defending champion Roger Federer’s route to the final has been a lot less complicated. Both have aged gracefully over the years, and today the two legends beat out their younger opponents to reign supreme in Ohio.
Creative multi-tasking can make Roger Federer a wonder to watch.
The Swiss star came off the back of some characteristically stylish strokes, with his trademark one-handed backhand in full flow in the heat of Cincinnati.
Federer cruised past the early rounds and won all his matches in straight sets to reach the final where he met long time rival and current World No. 1 Novak Djokovic, who was bidding to win his first title in Cincinnati and claim all ATP World Tour Masters 1000 titles. With a win he’d become the first player to triumph in all nine of the ATP’s elite Masters 1000 events a feat that Federer said would be “quite unbelievable”. After going out in the second round of Wimbledon, Nadal went over to Hamburg and won a tournament on his beloved clay and then was destroyed by Nishikori in the quarterfinals in Montreal, and defeated in the third round in Cincinnati by compatriot Feliciano Lopez.
“Federer is a more aggressive player here because of the fast court conditions”. Mainly, he couldn’t keep up with Federer’s serve. Roger was charging the net on several points, and rushing Djokovic into errors.
The 17-time Grand Slam champion turned back the years with a classic performance to win 7-6, 6-3 in just 90 minutes.
Federer was serving well. The Swiss finishes the week not conceding a break of serve in 49 service games. He was doing well to stay with Federer. Now Federer returns with a win at Cincy, inching ahead 21-20 in their career meetings.
“Come on, he’s been close so many years, he deserves it”. There have been occassions where the Serbian has been outplayed but Djokovic’s stamina, power and all-round game has been too much to handle. A trainer checked his lower rib cage on his left side and his abdomen Djokovic called it a “minor problem”. “I played great tennis tonight”. Federer, who skipped the Montreal Masters, is looking as fresh and as in-form as ever, despite not playing since the Wimbledon Final, where he was beaten by Novak Djokovic. Federer held easily to lead 3-0.
Indeed, it was Djokovic who was forced to save four break points before taking the opener to a tiebreak. Dolgopolov drilled an ace out wide to take the first set more than doubling Djokovic in winners (12 to 5).
Peter Bodo has been covering tennis for over 35 years, mostly recently for ESPN.