Djokovic overcomes illness to progress at ATP Finals

16 November, 2018, 17:16 | Author: Greg Lawrence
  • Rafael Nadal's withdrawal affects me at ATP Finals says Roger Federer

"I think the date is very important and I think none of the top players will play, except Rafa (Nadal) because it's in Spain".

Alexander Zverev labelled the length of the tennis season "ridiculous" after appearing to run out of steam against Novak Djokovic at the ATP Finals on Thursday (AEDT).

It was highly competitive with Zverev more than holding his own, and even threatening to break the World No. 1, but his failure to do so belied a worse fate, as he double-faulted away the set for Djokovic to take the lead.

Zverev, Cilic and Isner can all still join Djokovic in the semis, and calculators might be needed on Friday.

Isner wrote an emotional post on Instagram last night, saying: 'It's hard to explain how much I loved you and how instrumental you were in making me who I am today.

Zverev played a defensive forehand slice to set up a chance to finish the point with a backhand lob, but his attempt drifted just wide and Djokovic held on for 5-4.

Zverev has one of the most piercing serves in the circuit and has clocked speeds over 130 miles per hour even on second serves.

Novak Djokovic sent out a warning to his rivals at the ATP Finals on Monday, brushing aside big-serving John Isner 6-4, 6-3 to launch his bid for a record-equalling sixth ATP Finals title in style. "Then, I guess, you have mentally quite an edge", Djokovic, who has won 33 of his last 35 matches, said.

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As in 2014, the first seven singles matches of the tournament have been completed in straight sets. I didn't serve that great and he obviously made a lot of unforced errors that allowed me to win probably easier than expected and especially in the second set, he wasn't close to his best. 6-1, and would go on to win his 32nd Masters title.

Zverev gave Djokovic a set point with a spate of errors in the next game, and conceded it with a double-fault.

Cilic's revival keeps him in with a chance of qualifying for the semi-finals, while American eighth seed Isner still has an outside chance of advancing despite losing his first two matches.

Rather like the Hewitt Group already discussed, the Kuerten Group also has a high likelihood of numerous last-round qualification permutations following the evening match, with Marin Cilic a [1.57] favourite to get the better of John Isner, which again, I do make pretty accurate.

John Isner of the USA reacts after losing his group stage match against Croatia's Marin Cilic.

Djokovic said: 'The match was great.

Cilic kept his hopes of a semifinal berth alive as he came through this year's first three-setter - improving his record at the tournament to a still dismal 2-9.

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