No, this is not Spartaaaaa! 😛 300 is the magical number of Masters 1000 match wins Roger Federer achieved when he won his 2nd Round match at Cincinnati vs. Vasek Pospisil. He is the first player to reach 300 Masters wins. Another significant stat, with this win he has also won his 45th match of the year. That is special when you realize that last year he won 45 matches in total. What a difference a year makes!
The match was not easy by any means and through it all Roger clearly looked annoyed with himself. He squandered break points in the first set and it ended up being settled with a tiebreak where Roger slightly edged out the Canadian. The second set was more of the same; great serving by both players for the most part but not enough rhythm in baseline play. It looked like it would head to another tie-break with Roger serving at 5*-6 when an impossible shot from Vasek got Roger down 0-30. Before we could blink, Roger was broken as Vasek snatched the set away from a highly irritated Roger. I think at that point Roger had had enough because he stepped it up in the deciding set while at the same time Vasek started to tire and whither. Roger broke Vasek twice to seal the final set and win the match.
The Maestro served very well but his baseline game seemed off. However he had to get used to very different conditions from Toronto, with a quick turnaround from that final as well, so that’s understandable. In fact, of the 4 semi-finalists in Toronto, Roger is the only one who won his first match in Cincy.
Up next is Gael Monfils and I am wary of him already. Roger’s H2H is a positive 6-2 but the last time they played was in Shanghai last year when Roger was defeated. I saw Monfils’ match last night and he was on fire. Plus he had a night match just like the one they will have today. So he’s already more familiar with the night conditions than Roger. Nonetheless, Roger is Roger and those 6 wins he has against Gael should not be discounted. Here’s hoping Roger can come through, even if it’s though a best of three match. Only 5 hours to go, Allez Maestro!
***Photo is a Getty Image from Zimbio.com***
***NOTE: It makes me sad to say it but unfortunately due to the conflicting timezones and work life getting in the way, I might not be as frequent with my blog posts during the US swing. I do hope the readers will still visit nonetheless. Apologies in advance if I miss out on reporting a match. Please know it’s not for lack of motivation or passion for RF 😦 ***