Wednesday, 26 September, 2018

Djokovic out as Federer cruises

Roger Federer Novak Djokovic- cropped Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic at the Australian Open in 2016
Kelvin Reese | 14 March, 2018, 06:15

Roger Federer, of Switzerland, returns a shot against Jack Sock during an exhibition tennis match in San Jose, California. The magic just happens.

The 12-time major victor led 5-2 in the opener, but Daniel fought back well to clinch the first set on a tie-break, and although Djokovic pulled level, 61 unforced errors from the five-time champion saw Daniel clinch victory after two-and-a-half hours.

Despite being out of action because of injury, Rafael Nadal has achieved a unique piece of history only ever achieved by Roger Federer and Jimmy Connors. And Federer on a tennis court is heaven on earth.

Djokovic was defeated by the enthusiasm of his rival, who did not miss the unique opportunity to win the game during the first time they played against each other. "So naturally, it's all a change".

"The nighttime is much deader".

Federer, who led by a set when play was halted due to rain at 2-2 on Saturday night, staved off a set point in a tiebreak to beat Delbonis 6-3 7-6 (8-6). The surface doesn't react so much; the ball doesn't travel so fast.

Daniel, who is ranked 109th in the world, advanced to the third round where he will face Gael Monfils of France who outlasted American John Isner 6-7 (5/7), 7-6 (7/3), 7-5. Whatever Federer is doing in the offseason, it's working.

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Federer stressed it was always going to be hard for the six-time Australian victor to impress on his return from injury, which is why the 36-year-old was not surprised following Djokovic's struggle in Indian Wells.

Keep in mind that during his stellar start in 2017, Federer looked beatable at times.

"At the Masters 1000s, when the format was different, it was the best-of-five-set finals in the finals".

It goes without saying Federer's perseverance has been as key to his success as any ace or victor.

"To me, it's not that surprising", Federer said. "But at the same time, I have worked really hard for this, and I know in my heart that I really deserve it and all of my hard work is really paying off".

Federer and 10th seed Djokovic both came into the tournament seeking to become the first six-time victor of the event.

So you can forgive Federer if a few raindrops and overcooked groundstrokes won't deter him moving forward.

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