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Updated: 26 min 51 sec ago
Watch Hot Shot as Roger Federer closes out the first set against Novak Djokovic. Watch live tennis at tennistv.com.
ATP World Tour Uncovered profiles Stan Wawrinka.
ATP World Tour Uncovered asks the biggest stars what they love about the sport.
See the latest Emirates ATP Rankings as of 16 November.
Fishing or golf? It's a tough call for Rafael Nadal.
How well do doubles partners Marcin Matkowski and Nenad Zimonjic really know each other?
Kei Nishikori remains in contention for a semi-final berth after edging Tomas Berdych.
Andy Murray will face Rafael Nadal, while Stan Wawrinka takes on David Ferrer.
Tennis legend Pat Cash shares his thoughts on the matchup.
Has there been a more compelling marquee matchup in 2015 than Novak Djokovic vs. Roger Federer, the Hall of Fame-caliber clash of titans? It seems there’s always so much on the line in these Serbian-Swiss encounters. Coming into the ATP World Tour Finals, the longtime foes had battled it out in no less than six finals on the year.
And nearly a decade into this one-of-a-kind rivalry, amazingly, their FedEx ATP Head2Head stands deadlocked at an even 21-21.
“I think it's really become a very nice rivalry,” says Federer. “It seems people like the way we play against each other. I don't think we have to adjust our games very much against each other. We can just play our game, and then the better man wins. It's been nice seeing Novak's improvements over all these years. He's become such an unbelievable player, especially the last five, six years, and he’s cleaned up his game so nicely and became the best mover in the game. It's really a pleasure playing against him every single time.”
“We always make each other play our best tennis,” Djokovic concurs. “We require from each other the maximum focus and commitment, and that's what raises the quality of the match. That's why he's who he is.”
Federer once dominated the rivalry. In fact, he won seven of their first 10 meetings. But Djokovic’s monster years of 2011 and 2015 helped him make up some ground. After claiming four of six finals against Federer this year, including Wimbledon and the US Open, as well as ATP World Tour Masters 1000 events in Indian Wells and Rome, they are now on even ground. To think that when they first stood on opposite sides of the net in Monaco back in 2006, Djokovic was somewhat of an unknown commodity. After that first encounter, a 6-3, 2-6, 6-3 Round of 64 win in Federer’s favor, the Swiss asserted, “I mean, he was all right from the baseline and everything. I think he's still got many areas where he can improve, so there is some potential.”
Potential? You got that right.
Though Federer would strike first this year with a 6-3, 7-5 victory in Dubai, Djokovic reeled off three straight trophy-clinching wins in Indian Wells (6-3, 6-7(5), 6-2), Rome (6-4, 6-3) and Wimbledon (7-6(1), 6-7(10), 6-4, 6-3), where for a second straight year he would get the better of the seven-time champion. In doing so, he became the first player since the Swiss in 2007 to successfully defend his title at the All England Club.
Federer would bounce back in Cincinnati with an aggressive 7-6(1), 6-3 win over Djokovic, who was bidding to complete a Career Golden Masters. It was Federer’s seventh ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title in Cincinnati, proving that at 34 he’s far from finished.
“He's just not going away,” said Djokovic. “He's not dropping his level too much. He's always going to be out there making you play your best if you want to win. So that's who Roger is. That's why he has won so many Grand Slam titles.”
For the second time in his career, Djokovic would win his third major of the year at the US Open, this one at the expense of Federer under the lights in Arthur Ashe Stadium 6-4, 5-7, 6-4, 6-4. The win put the World No. 1 in double digits for major titles, making him the eighth player to accomplish the feat.
As fate would have it, they now find themselves in the same Group Stan Smith at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, alongside Tomas Berdych and Kei Nishikori. And on Tuesday, one of them will inch ahead in the rivalry. But we get the feeling they’ll meet again.
A look at the Djokovic vs. Federer rivalry in 2015:EVENT SURFACE ROUND WINNER SCORE Dubai Hard F Federer 6-3, 7-5 Indian Wells
Hard F Djokovic 6-3, 6-7(5), 6-2 Rome Clay F Djokovic 6-4, 6-3 Wimbledon Grass F Djokovic 7-6(1), 6-7(10), 6-4, 6-3 Cincinnati Hard F Federer 7-6(1), 6-3 US Open
Hard F Djokovic 6-4, 5-7, 6-4, 6-4
They have squared off no less than six times in a final this year, so the group stage of the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals is not where most envisioned seeing Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer scrapping it out. As it stands, they could well be on target for a rematch in the final at the season-ending championship, but first both will have to negotiate a way out of the Stan Smith Group and past semi-final opponents.
On Tuesday, they meet for the 43rd time. They have met more than any other two players in the Open Era except Djokovic and Rafael Nadal (45). They each have 21 wins in the FedEx Head2Head rivalry. That tie is about to be broken when six-time champion Federer and four-time winner Djokovic meet for the fourth time at the season finale.
The World No. 1 is 2-1 against Federer at The O2, not including a win via walkover in the 2014 final. Djokovic has never had more victories than Federer in their rivalry, which dates back nearly a decade to ATP Masters 1000 Monte-Carlo in 2006. A 22nd win would put either Djokovic or Federer in prime position to qualify for the semi-finals from their group.
Djokovic leads the ATP World Tour with 10 titles (also in 2011) and has reached a record 14 consecutive finals this season. The 28-year-old Belgrade native won a record six ATP Masters 1000 titles in Indian Wells, Miami, Monte-Carlo, Rome, Shanghai, and the BNP Paribas Masters in Paris, compiling a 39-2 record. His 26 career ATP Masters 1000 titles are second only to Nadal’s 27. He is the first player to reach 10 or more straight finals in a season since Federer (11 in ’06, 17 dating back to ’05).
Djokovic opened with a comprehensive 6-1, 6-1 win over Kei Nishikori and has now won his past 15 matches at the season finale. He now holds a 39-match indoor winning streak , with his last defeat coming to Sam Querrey in the second round of the BNP Paribas Masters in 2012. He hasn’t lost since falling to Federer in the ATP Masters 1000 Cincinnati final in August.
Federer opened with a 6-4, 6-2 victory over Tomas Berdych on Sunday. At 34, he is the oldest player to qualify for the year-end finale since Andre Agassi (35) in 2005 and comes in ranked in the Top 3 for the 11th time in 14 years. His six titles this year is second only to Djokovic. Federer has compiled a 6-4 record in finals this season with all four losses coming to the Serb.
After straight-set losses on Sunday, No. 6 seed Berdych and No. 8 seed Nishikori play in a pivotal match during the afternoon session. Back at The O2 for a sixth straight season, Berdych is 0-6 lifetime in his first round-robin match and 5-0 in his second. Nishikori leads their FedEx ATP Head2Head history 3-1 but they haven’t met in more than three years.
The 30-year-old Czech has reached the quarter-finals or better at 15 of 21 events this season, clinching two titles on the way. At 25, Nishikori is the youngest player in this year’s season finale and is looking to reach the semi-finals for the second year in a row. The top player from Japan reached the quarter-finals or better in 13 of 18 tournaments, capturing three ATP World Tour titles from four finals.
In doubles, No. 4 seeds Jamie Murray and John Peers face No. 8 seeds Rohan Bopanna and Florin Mergea for the chance to improve to 2-0 in Ashe/Smith Group. The evening doubles match pits Americans Bob and Mike Bryan against Italians Simone Bolelli and Fabio Fognini. The Bryans are 1-6 in their past seven matches this season.
Since beating Rafael Nadal to land his maiden Grand Slam title at last year’s Australian Open, Stan Wawrinka had claimed three of his past four matches against an opponent who had previously not dropped in a set in their 12 prior encounters.
But at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals on Monday, Wawrinka’s level, by his own admission, just wasn’t there, as the Spaniard carved out another straight-sets victory. A disappointed Wawrinka – who had added four titles this year, including the Roland Garros title to his swag – never found his rhythm against the World No. 5.
“Was just a really bad day at the office,” he said. “Many little things that weren’t good today. For sure, if you look it's a really bad match. Hopefully, I can put it back together and get ready for the next match.”
Despite his play not being anywhere near the level he would like it, Wawrinka came up against an opponent producing some of his most positive form all season. “He's playing better than a few months ago, that's for sure,” Wawrinka said.
“You can see the last two months he made some finals, played some good matches, beat some Top-10 guys, playing a little bit more aggressive, staying a little bit more on his line. But still, for sure, he's not where he wants to be probably or where he was when he was No. 1 and really strong. But so far he's been playing better.”
The 30-year-old Swiss will have to regroup if he was to match his efforts from last season’s finale, where he held match points against Roger Federer in the semi-finals. “It's still just the first match,” he said. “For sure, I will have to play better. But you never know.
"That's why it's interesting here – you can lose the first match and still qualify. I will have to play some better tennis. I will have to be back on my top form for the next one against David Ferrer.”
No. 5 seed Rafael Nadal got off to a successful start at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals on Monday, improving to 14-3 against No. 4 seed Stan Wawrinka with a 6-3, 6-2 win in his round-robin opener.
It marked their second FedEx ATP Head2Head encounter in less than two weeks, Wawrinka having claimed their quarter-final clash at the BNP Paribas Masters in a pair of tie-break sets 7-6(8), 7-6(7). But this time around it was all Nadal.
It was a nervy start for the Group Ilie Nastase foes. Both players were broken at love to open the first set, each struggling to find traction on their serve. But they eventually settled in, and Nadal would move in front with a break in the eighth game for a 5-3 lead. He would close out the stanza in just under 40 minutes.
Nadal, into the year-end championships for the 11th straight year, carried that momentum into the second set and with a pair of breaks was out to a 5-1 advantage. He would serve out the match two games later in one hour and 22 minutes.
"I think I played a solid match," said Nadal, who registered 18 winners to 12 unforced errors. "I had one bad game, the first one of the match. But then immediately I was playing well. I played the way that I wanted to play. I played aggressive. I played with not many mistakes."
“When something went wrong today, everything went wrong,” said Wawrinka, who amassed 35 unforced errors in the loss. “It was just a really bad day at the office.”
Held title-less in six previous appearances at the year-end championships, Nadal is still seeking his first Barclays ATP World Tour Finals crown. He was a runner-up in 2010 and 2013.
Wawrinka is making his third consecutive appearance at The O2 after reaching the semi-finals the past two years. The 30-year-old has a chance to pass countryman Roger Federer this week and become the year-end No. 1 Swiss for the first time. But to do so, he must advance to his first Barclays ATP World Tour Finals championship match.
Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo dug deep Monday night to keep alive their chances of finishing year-end No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Doubles Team Rankings.
Third seeds and last year's finalists Dodig and Melo saved two match points at 4-5 in the second set en route to a 3-6, 7-6(4), 10-7 victory over sixth seeds Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut in Group Fleming/McEnroe at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals.
Dodig and Melo improve to 6,340 points in the Emirates ATP Race To London, behind No. 2-ranked Bob and Mike Bryan (6,465) and Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau (6,510), who won earlier on Monday.
Herbert and Mahut broke serve twice in the 29-minute opener and lead 5-3, with Herbert serving at 30/40 - two match points. But the Frenchman struck three double faults in the game, who revived Dodig and Melo's bid for a 33rd victory of the year.
Herbert and Mahut went on to lead 4/1 in the tie-break, but clever service and return placement by Dodig and Melo, the individual World No. 1 kept a spectators at the O2 in London on the edges of their seats. Dodig and Melo never relinquished the early control they gained in the Match tie-break.
Herbert and Mahut, making their season finale debuts, drop to 29-11 on the year, highlighted by the US Open (d. J. Murray-Peers) and Aegon Championships (d. Matkowski-Zimonjic) titles.
As they prepare to face Pierre-Hugues Herbert and Nicolas Mahut at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals, Roland Garros champions Ivan Dodig and Marcelo Melo put each other on the spot with a quickfire quiz.
David Ferrer chooses between Real Madrid or Barcelona, cats or dogs and paella or tapas between sponsor visits on Sunday at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals.
Andy Murray is one match win away from securing year-end No. 2 in the Emirates ATP Rankings after he beat David Ferrer on Monday afternoon at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals.
Second seed Murray, who has qualified for the season finale for the eighth straight year, recorded his fifth straight win over 2007 finalist and seventh seed David Ferrer 6-4, 6-4 in their Group Ilie Nastase clash at The O2 in London.
Each player had opportunities to break early in the first set, notably Murray in the eighth game when he could not convert three break point chances. However, he sealed the 47-minute opener, which included him hitting 13 winners, when he broke Ferrer to 15 in the 10th game.
Ferrer bounced back immediately, breaking Murray to love en route to a 2-0 lead in the second set. But Murray worked his way back to 3-3, sealing his second chance. Murray clinched his 69th match win of the year by breaking Ferrer for a third time to end the 90-minute encounter.
Ferrer, now 8-12 at the season finale, committed 24 unforced errors - nine coming on his backhand. He has won five ATP World Tour titles this year.
"I served bad at the end of the first set and also in the second set," admitted Ferrer. "When the serve doesn't work against Top 10 players, it's difficult to win. In important moments, he was better than me."
Murray is now 60-0 in matches this year when he has won the first set.
Watch Hot Shot as Andy Murray tries to out-wit David Ferrer at the net. Watch live tennis at tennistv.com.
Jean-Julien Rojer and Horia Tecau have moved to No. 1 in the Emirates ATP Race To London, ahead of Bob Bryan and Mike Bryan, after recording their first victory in Group Fleming/McEnroe on Monday at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals.
Second seeds Rojer and Tecau improved to 44-21 on the season by beating seventh seeds Marcin Matkowski and Nenad Zimonjic 6-2, 6-4 in the round-robin group match.
They now have 6,510 points in the Emirates ATP Doubles Team Rankings, usurping the Bryan brothers (6,465), who have been the year-end No. 1 team for the past six years (10 of the past 12 years). The Bryans lost their opening match to Rohan Bopanna and Florin Mergea in Group Ashe/Smith on Sunday.
"The way we prepare for our matches and our tournaments, we always try to do our best, to think about the next match, think about getting better, about trying to win titles," said Tecau. "We don't think about points so much and the [Emirates ATP Doubles Team] Rankings. We knew that we got this close to the Bryan brothers, but at the end of the day we want to get a first-match win here. We want to continue with a win. What comes after that comes."We're going to be extremely happy and proud if we're going to finish the year No. 1. If not, we gave everything every match. That's the way we play.
Rojer and Tecau swept into a 5-1 lead courtesy of service breaks in the third and fifth games. They won eight of the nine games and took a 2-0 lead in the second set, before Matkowski and Zimonjic regrouped to fight to a 3-2 advantage. From a 2-3 deficit, Rojer and Tecau won three consecutive games in their third meeting with Matkowski and Zimonjic. Tecau closed out the 67-minute encounter to 30.
"We were really sharp from the beginning," said Rojer. "We've had in the past month some very clean and sharp matches where we've played. I felt very good coming into the match. I was very comfortable coming into the match.
Last year Rojer and Tecau went 0-3 in group play at The O2 in London, venue of the season finale. Matkowski and Zimonjic are now 33-20 on the year, highlighted by three runner-up finishes.
Watch Hot Shot as Jean-Julien Rojer makes an athletic get. Watch live tennis at tennistv.com