October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

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October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by MrInvisible on Tue 10 Oct 2017, 11:48 pm

Noticed that other than the Kyrgios thread there's not much discussion about the tournaments going on this season - 606 gone into early hibernation?  We may have had the last slam of the season and Nadal may have sewn up number 1 spot, but there's still plenty going.  To recap so far:

Goffin's proved to be one of the form players, bagging the Shenzhen Open and Japan Open titles - bodes well for the forthcoming Davis Cup final (as long as he doesn't over-play!).  Nadal won the China Open, whilst Istomin won a rare title (only his 2nd) at Chengdu.

For the end of season masters in London, looks like Goffin's in good shout with chance to qualify and I think Querrey may just sneak in ahead of Anderson - http://www.atpworldtour.com/en/rankings/singles-race-to-london

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Wed 11 Oct 2017, 8:15 am

Rog in action today in Shanghai. Has a tricky match against Schwartzman who's been having a good season.
   Bet Belgium are hoping Goffin's run does not continue as they want him fresh for the DC final. 
   Still no news about Andy. Guess we'll eventually hear he won't play again this season. Amazingly, he is as high as 13th in the year-so-far points table and could, theoretically, still qualify for the 02 should he, say, win Paris. All very unlikely, though.
   Just when I though Kyrgios had got his sane head on he goes crazy again.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by Guest82 on Wed 11 Oct 2017, 9:13 am

Goffin is now in seventh position in the race. Good chance he will make the O2.

Final berth is between PCB, Querrey and Anderson by the looks of things.

Dimitrov saved match points and beat Ryan Harrison this morning.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Wed 11 Oct 2017, 11:55 am

Unsurprisingly, given his recent workload, Goffin loses in straights today. Bedene has to retire for the second week running. Don't play if you're not fit.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by Calder106 on Wed 11 Oct 2017, 12:12 pm

Not sure how to rate Goffin's form as he has not played a top 10 player since the Italian Open in May. Nearest to top 20 players have been Kyrgios, who he beat on clay in the Davis Cup but lost to easily on hard at Cincy, and Monfils (retired) in the USO.

The old adage of you can only beat who turns up rings true here. Credit to him that he did that in the last two tournaments.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Wed 11 Oct 2017, 1:12 pm

Rafa wastes no time, dropping just three games in his opening match. He's made no secret of the fact he fancies the year-end championship - about the only thing he's not won in the sport.
   Harrison must be kicking himself. 6-3 up on Dimi in the final set tiebreak, and he loses the last five points of the match.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Wed 11 Oct 2017, 4:49 pm

Rog was given a tough opener against Schwartzman but came thru in straights, despite missing a number of BPs in the opening set.
   Dolgo up next for Fed who is now 40-4 for the season.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Thu 12 Oct 2017, 9:03 am

Delpo knocks out A Zverev in three and could meet Fed. Thiem's already gone, beaten by Troicki, while Dimi has taken care of Querrey and will now, probably, face Rafa.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by Guest82 on Thu 12 Oct 2017, 9:23 am

sirfredperry wrote:Delpo knocks out A Zverev in three and could meet Fed. Thiem's already gone, beaten by Troicki, while Dimi has taken care of Querrey and will now, probably, face Rafa.

Thiem has an overall losing record in BO3 hard court matches.   Amazing stat, considering he will be YE 4 or 5.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Thu 12 Oct 2017, 5:34 pm

Rafa and Rog through in straight forward fashion. If this was New York you'd have to say that something would prevent a Fedal final but this is Shanghai so it could happen.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by JuliusHMarx on Thu 12 Oct 2017, 10:58 pm

sirfredperry wrote:Rafa and Rog through in straight forward fashion. If this was New York you'd have to say that something would prevent a Fedal final but this is Shanghai so it could happen.

Unless they get Shanghai'ed along the way.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 11:52 am

Rafa at least given a good test today by Dimi who fought back from a possible straight-sets defeat (trailing in second-set tiebreak) to take it to a third before succumbing.
  Until today Rafa was not only winning but getting home fairly comfortably. This is now one of his best-ever seasons.

Later: As I write Troicki has taken the first set of his quarter against delpo 6-4.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 3:12 pm

So Rafa-Cilic and Fed-delpo semis in Shanghai. Fed now 16-2 against Gasquet. Chance for a bit of revenge for Rog against JMDP following New York last month. From the stats, both appearing to be serving well. Fed should be the fresher of the two, given the length of matches played so far. 
    Not really giving Cilic much of a chance in the other semi.

Later: Delpo fell on his wrist during his win but was able to carry on, although he has gone for a hospital scan. Let's hope it's not too serious but I suppose there's a chance he may have to pull out.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by MrInvisible on Fri 13 Oct 2017, 10:21 pm

In another tournament at another time, there'd be a chance of Cilic vs Del Potro, but its looking like we'll get a Federer v Nadal final this time round, which would be an unexpected late season treat.  Over the years we've not had too many matches between the pair outside the slams, claycourt tournament and the odd match at end of season ATP Masters.

As for Cilic, he's looking a good bet to reach end of season Masters in London.  Would like to see Del Potro there too but I think he's got too much ground to make up in order to reach the top 8.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Sat 14 Oct 2017, 11:43 am

Rafa broken serving for the match at 5-4 in the second against Cilic. So Croat still in it.


Later: Rafa finally over the line, taking the second set tiebreak 7-3.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by MrInvisible on Sat 14 Oct 2017, 1:40 pm

In WTA news, Sharapova reaches her first final, at the Tianjin Open, since returning from her doping ban.   Del Potro gets the break to go 4-2 up in the 1st set against Federer.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by MrInvisible on Sat 14 Oct 2017, 3:48 pm

Federer goes on to beat Del Potro, winning 6-3 in the 3rd set.  Federer v Nadal final here we come.  The head-to-head is 23-14 in Nadal's favour, but interestingly Federer has won the last 4 meetings, with the last win for Nadal coming at the 2014 Australian Open.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Sat 14 Oct 2017, 6:09 pm

Guess delpo really needed to win in straight sets today having had some long matches. 
I would make Rafa favourite for the final, with a win pretty much sewing up the year-end number one spot. Of course, this may not be their last meeting this year, the way things are going.
   I think if Rafa has a choice he'd rather beat Rog in the final at the 02 in London than here. But after four straight defeats against the Swiss, any win will do.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by lags72 on Sat 14 Oct 2017, 10:17 pm

Sounds odd to say that Rafa needs to stop the rot - but that's pretty much the way it is, given that he has now lost four in a row v Roger.

Rafa has been getting progressively better during the course of the year and this hard court success in the second half of the season is as impressive as it is rare. For Federer it's been more a case of steady consistency. I just think Rafa goes into the Final with the greater momentum and as such is favourite to continue his winning run.

Fed is in a very calm place right now, with two Slam wins way beyond his realistic expectations for 2017 after the long layoff. I doubt he would be especially bothered by a loss tomorrow. But of course that doesn't mean he's not keen to win - or at least put in a solid performance.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by Born Slippy on Sat 14 Oct 2017, 10:25 pm

Fed in straight sets tomorrow. I can't see Rafa being able to do anything with his serve on courts which are this quick. Will still be tough to get YE1 but essential for Fed if he is to retain that option.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by Born Slippy on Sun 15 Oct 2017, 11:01 am

As anticipated, Rafa was unable to make any impact on the Federer serve. Only 8 points won in 9 Federer service games. Tactically, Rafa looked totally clueless. Phenomenal from Federer.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by lags72 on Sun 15 Oct 2017, 11:11 am

Well, you called it right, spot on BS ..... all credit !

Others have been pushing Rafa hard - but it took Federer to snap this impressive late season winning streak, dating back to the USO.

That's now 5-0 to Federer in their recent h2h - and I would think (?) it represents the most sustained spell of success that Federer has had during their career meetings.

Just how is he producing this level of tennis at the age of 36 Headscratch That's the part that seems faintly ridiculous to me.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Sun 15 Oct 2017, 11:27 am

Well, straights for Rog after I'd predicted a Rafa win! Not a single BP for Rafa and, as BS mentions above, just eight points won by the Spaniard in nine Fed service games.
   Although Rafa still favourite for the year-end number one, this defeat means it's still not a foregone conclusion.


Later: Just been watching some highlights from the final. Rafa was standing miles behind the baseline. This is on a quick hard court. Crazy. He's got a nice touch around the net, too. He's got to vary his tactics. Asked about the number one position, Fed said he didn't expect to get it but was looking forward to the O2 and keeping things going. Two Slams and three Masters this year aint bad, of course.
   He may not match Connors 109 tournament wins but I think the 100 is a possibility, with just six to go now.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by theslosty on Sun 15 Oct 2017, 3:24 pm

Highlights are a must-see for Federer fans - when he plays like this on a fast surface he is virtually unplayable. Incredibly, 6-4 6-3 flattered Rafa.
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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Sun 15 Oct 2017, 5:12 pm

That's seven straight sets for Fed against Rafa this year, starting with the fifth set in Melbourne.
   Also wonder when Rafa last played a match in which he didn't create any BPs?
   Last year, with Rog and Rafa absent for long periods, first Djoko and then Murray dominated. This year, with Nole and Andy missing chunks, it's the other two of the Big Four who have cleaned up. With the likes of Stan the Man and Nishi also absent at present, it suggests the Big Four are a long way clear of the rest, although A Zverev has had a good season.
   Interesting that Fed felt that he'd benefited by arriving early in Shanghai. With that in mind, I wonder if he'll skip Paris so as to fully prepare for the 02. Meanwhile the Basel ballboys/girls can leave room for the pizza Rog always buys them, win or lose.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by Henman Bill on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 12:42 am

The roof closing probably helped Federer but it didn't seem that fast to me, but maybe I'm wrong. The W/UE stats showed Federer had way more than double W than UE, which is quite unusual for anyone to achieve against one of the top players. Even without serve his winners were well ahead of his unforced errors.

Rafa didn't seem quite at his best, there were quite a few short balls, I couldn't visibly detect any injury effecting him, but it may have done.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by laverfan on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 1:52 am

Nadal, under Moya, is changing his game, but old habits seem to be dying hard. He was much more willing to come to net v Cilic and Dimitrov, but seemed to fall back to the old patterns on a fast/low court. If he wants an O2 crown, Moya has his work cut out.

Federer was unusually patient, based on what I saw in parts of the match highlights .


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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by Guest82 on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 10:00 am

To be honest if Rafa didn't serve so well he would have been looking at an embarrassing scoreline.

Strange that the rivalry has completely turned around - Rafa looks clueless tactically when for so many years it was the other way around. Barry Cowan said on commentary that Federer has only lost once to Rafa since he changed racket.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by lags72 on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 12:41 pm

Guest82 wrote:To be honest if Rafa didn't serve so well he would have been looking at an embarrassing scoreline.  

Strange that the rivalry has completely turned around - Rafa looks clueless tactically when for so many years it was the other way around.  Barry Cowan said on commentary that Federer has only lost once to Rafa since he changed racket.

And it's not as though Rafa had been playing poorly in Shanghai. Whilst en route to the Final, he was actually looking very good indeed - until he came up against Fed.

Re Cowan's comment : I can recall, during one of Federer's Wimbledon matches this year, Frew McMillan (on BBC coverage) saying that he couldn't see Rafa ever beating Federer again other than on clay. Much as I respect Frew's knowledge of the game and his calm, measured approach as a pundit, I think that's a bit extreme and I just don't agree. BUT, regardless, the essential point is that such a comment by Frew would have seemed pretty wacky only a year or so ago ; yet on the basis of their most recent meetings (IW, Miami, Shanghai .... all straight sets), it now has a lot of credibility.

Addendum : Federer - as the oldest Top 10 player (and by some distance ....) - now has a 10-1 h2h in 2017 versus other top tenners. Impressive stuff.


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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by Henman Bill on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 1:59 pm

I think the 1 he lost he was injured as well so it could have been 11-0 on the other hand he hasn't had to face Novak or Murray this season.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by Guest82 on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 2:32 pm

I believe Federer also now leads the H2H on grass and hard courts too. So perhaps a bit more balance to the rivalry.

Whilst they have both had excellent seasons Federer feels like the best player this year, would be nice for him to get back to No1 at some point to prove it.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by Henman Bill on Mon 16 Oct 2017, 8:40 pm

11-9 is the Federer lead currently on hard, however Rafa may yet battle back.

Federer also has won 7 sets in a row against Rafa now.

Another stat I saw is that Federer has just now tied for second on the most titles won in the open era list

Connors 109
Federer 94
Lendl 94
Mcenroe 77
Nadal 75
Laver 74* (this is only open era, so only half his career)
Djokovic 68
Borg 64
Sampras 64

Martina Navratilova has 167, and 354 including doubles, so that is one record Federer is not going to reach.



Connors' record still looks out of reach, although an even 100 might be just about plausible.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by barrystar on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 9:05 am

@HB perhaps an even more interesting stat for Fedal matches is that Nadal has not broken the Federer serve since the final set at the Australian Open.

Matches involving Fedal, or maybe even just Federer alone are rather like this famous Bateman Cartoon right now.
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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 9:45 am

Much speculation now about just which events Rog and Rafa will play over the next few weeks. Safe to say, I think, that both will play the 02 but as for Basel and Paris, who knows?
   Rog also has his Scottish charity-match date with Murray to be fitted in.
   Agree that Connors' 109 tournament wins total is probably out of reach but 100 is a distinct possibility.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by lags72 on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 11:18 am

I saw a quote from Federer, just after Shanghai was done & dusted, in which he said he was straight back to Switzerland where he intends to think through his schedule for what remains of the season. He sounded a little uncertain about Paris & Basel, but was fully focussed on London WTF as a key target.

Re Connors :  yes, his 109 is a bridge too far. However ........

I really don't wish to take anything away from Jimbo's overall career achievements (which obviously speak for themselves) ; but when you compare the 'quality' of titles in the late stages of their respective careers, those being picked up by Federer (Slams & Masters) are of a significantly higher level. Slams are Slams, whereas ATP tournaments can of course change in their ranking and 'importance' over time - but I'm pretty sure that - even back in the day -  many of the events Connors was winning in his last five years on tour were not exactly considered biggies ( Tel Aviv ....Boca West ...Toulouse ....Washington ....La Quinta ...Memphis ...Los Angeles).

Perhaps if Fed decided at some point (and I rather doubt he would) to focus on low-tier events, he could pick up a fair few titles to bump up his tally. But I just can't imagine this is a personal objective for him.

Connors was just a few days past his 31st birthday when he won his last Slam.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by Guest82 on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 12:58 pm

sirfredperry wrote:Much speculation now about just which events Rog and Rafa will play over the next few weeks. Safe to say, I think, that both will play the 02 but as for Basel and Paris, who knows?
   Rog also has his Scottish charity-match date with Murray to be fitted in.
   Agree that Connors' 109 tournament wins total is probably out of reach but 100 is a distinct possibility.

A few rumours that Nadal is feeling pain in his knees. I guess he would skip Basel for sure but probably play Paris and WTF. Fed will probably play Basel & WTF but skip Paris.

Unless Rafa withdraws from Paris too - leaves No1 back open for Fed - so he would probably play all three then is my guess.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by MrInvisible on Tue 17 Oct 2017, 11:09 pm

With at least one out of Federer and Nadal unlikely to play Paris, there could be an opportunity for someone else to come through and win - maybe Cilic, who performs well indoors, or Dimitrov, who's had an up and down year but looks capable of winning more Masters titles. Alternatively, in this final masters of the season, are there any up and coming players capable of breaking through like Shavapolov did in Montreal?

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by lags72 on Wed 18 Oct 2017, 2:05 am

@ MrInvisible - yeah, a timely reminder that there is other talent around !

Here we are, so focussed on Fedal, and assuming that either one of them will automatically win the remaining events. But it ain't necessarily so ...... chin

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by lags72 on Wed 18 Oct 2017, 5:27 am

ATP official site reporting Rafa's withdrawal from Basel (although remaining field looks stronger than in many years).

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Wed 18 Oct 2017, 9:18 am

Nadal's Basel withdrawal down to knee soreness. Wonder if he'll now miss Paris as well and save himself for the 02?

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by naxroy on Wed 18 Oct 2017, 7:33 pm

I think none of them will play paris (fedal)

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by lags72 on Thu 19 Oct 2017, 7:25 am

sirfredperry wrote:Nadal's Basel withdrawal down to knee soreness. Wonder if he'll now miss Paris as well and save himself for the 02?

I believe he will be very keen to play London 02.

Not just with a view to winning it for the first time (all the really big names of the past have at least one WTF on their CV) - but it's where he would be formally recognised and 'ordained' by the ATP as the year-ending World Number One.

And I think - at this stage of his career - he would particularly relish the accolades ; understandably so, after what has been an unexpectedly (even in his own mind) strong season of high achievement.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Thu 19 Oct 2017, 7:50 am

While we await Murray's return, a couple of encouraging results for British women. In Luxembourg, Heather Watson and Naomi Broady are both thru' to the quarters after two good wins.
   Broady, an LL for the second week running, beat Lisicki yesterday after saving MPs in the second set.
   Meanwhile, you've probably heard the news that Konta has split with her coach and won't play again this season.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by Guest82 on Thu 19 Oct 2017, 9:49 am

lags72 wrote:
sirfredperry wrote:Nadal's Basel withdrawal down to knee soreness. Wonder if he'll now miss Paris as well and save himself for the 02?

I believe he will be very keen to play London 02.

Not just with a view to winning it for the first time (all the really big names of the past have at least one WTF on their CV) - but it's where he would be formally recognised and 'ordained' by the ATP as the year-ending World Number One.

And I think - at this stage of his career - he would particularly relish the accolades ; understandably so, after what has been an unexpectedly (even in his own mind) strong season of high achievement.

This has to be his best chance of a WTF, nearly all of the top players are missing. Only Federer would start as favourite above him and if he plays Basel and Paris could be tired by this point.

Zverev and perhaps Cilic have a chance against him...but he's big favourite. No one else would even stand a chance of beating him.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by lags72 on Thu 19 Oct 2017, 11:41 am

Guest82 wrote:


................................

....................


This has to be his best chance of a WTF, nearly all of the top players are missing

Zverev and perhaps Cilic have a chance against him...but he's big favourite.  No one else would even stand a chance of beating him.

There are big absentees, no doubt. BUT the field will be pretty strong nonetheless. All with their own particular motive (ie for different reasons) to take the title.

I'm not at all sure that even Nadal himself would share your total confidence that "no one else would even stand a chance of beating him"

His own thinking (along with most observers, I'd say) is more likely to be that anyone who has beaten him before has every chance of doing so again. So, Thiem clearly falls into that category (two wins already - even on Rafa's beloved clay surface) ; and let's not dismiss Dimitrov so quickly : just one win, and admittedly when Rafa was very much below par - but he has also come very, very close on other occasions.

Nadal has never truly sparkled at the WTF, and I see him more as a very strong contender rather than a convincing favourite.

For me, the only sure thing  - although I won't say 100% sure !! - is that IF Federer is in good shape and plays at his very best (eg at Shanghai Final level) in London, then I would expect him to take the title with little trouble from Rafa or anyone else. But, even when taking lengthy rest breaks, Federer cannot forever continue, in his advanced years, to produce the sort of tennis he has been producing in most of the events he has entered this season. Time perhaps for a new name on the WTF trophy.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry on Thu 19 Oct 2017, 6:07 pm

Latest to announce they've played their last in 2017 - Berdych and Kyrgios. Both at present ranked beneath Murray in the year-so-far points table, so the Scot may not be seeded too low at the AO.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry Yesterday at 5:35 pm

It's to be a Dimi-delpo final in Stockholm. Delpo had very long semi which went to  final-set tiebreak. Wearing himself out?

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by sirfredperry Today at 1:07 pm

Draw for Basel is out. Fed has Tiafoe up first, with Johnson, probably, next. Delpo is in other half of the draw, although may be worn out after this week.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

Post by lags72 Today at 1:49 pm

My thinking on Delpo is that he is just keen to spend as much time playing tennis as he can.

Yes, there's always the danger of burnout - but having been forced through injury to miss a sizeable chunk of his prime years, it strikes me that he wants - understandably - to make up for lost time while he can. The years have gone by very quickly since his USO win at the age of just 20.

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Re: October-November - Asian swing/European indoor season

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