The 6-7, 6-4, 6-3 battle of Basel was a spectacular display of Roger Federer’s versatility and Juan Martin Del Potro’s fire-power and the ability to barrel through the best.
Roger Federer was not looking sharp on the court
Roger Federer’s first serve deserted him for the most part, and his second left him on many occasions and resulted in an uncharacteristically high count of 5 double faults in the match, and three in one of the games. His first serve percentage was only 52 and he averaged around 30% in the first set. Despite the sub-par service display, Roger managed to bring home the trophy, and that speaks volumes of the Maestro’s genius.
Roger Federer should have won the first set
Roger Federer went up a break in the first set and was immediately broken back by Del Potro. Federer broke Del Potro again in the ninth game to go up 5-4 but lost his next service game to make it 5-5. Federer raced to a 3-0 lead, in the tie-break, and then lost six straight points and the set.
The second set was intense
Del Potro played well on important points and used his booming serve, and monstrous forehand to get out of trouble on various occasions. It was an intense battle in the second, but Federer managed to break Del Potro at 5-4 to close the second set.
Federer held onto his second break in the third set
The third set began with Federer losing his service early but broke Del Potro’s service back in the very next. Roger Federer then elevated his level of play, got a few more first serves in, and earned another break to go up 4-1. Federer then held onto that precious break until the very end to win 6-3 in the third. This win by Federer improved his head-to-head to 17-6 against Del Potro. However, Federer still trails 2-3 to Juan Martin in the finals.
The aggressive approach by Roger Federer
The high unforced errors and winners count by Federer is a testament to his aggressive approach in the match. He converted 5 of the 15 break points opportunities as compared to 3 of 7 by Del Potro. The match witnessed not only Federer’s genius and aggressive tennis, but also his resilience when little seemed to be working for him on important points.
Roger Federer now ranks second in titles count with 95 titles to his credit, and trails only 107 of Jimmy Connors.
Federer has withdrawn from Paris Masters this week and will play the World Tour Finals in London next. If Del Potro qualifies for the London finals, we can expect similar fireworks from their meeting again.