French Open Day 6: Federer and Wawrinka Score Routine Wins
How is everyone doing? Today was a pretty interesting day in Paris with some good matches. Like I said in my last post, I would be focusing mostly on Roger, Monfils, and Stan. Roger and Stan both won their matches 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 while Monfils had another five set marathon with Cuevas, finally winning 4-6, 7-6(1), 3-6, 6-4, 6-3. The seeds Berdych, Tsonga, and Simon also progressed to the next round. Finally, Gabashvili defeated Rosol while Nishikori already had a walk over after the withdrawal from Becker.
Federer vs Dzumhur
It was the first time I caught a glimpse of Dzumhur and my impression in the warm-up was that he was small and doesn’t have the weapons to bother Roger. In fact, I went to the gym after the second break in the second set because there was nothing left to see. Dzumhur hit a few decent shots at the start, but it didn’t take long for Roger to take advantage of his lack of firepower and break him in the third game. In the second set, Roger broke right away in the opening game and again in the fifth game, at which point I left the match.
Roger got broken back when he served for the second set at 5-3 but made up for it by breaking Dzumhur in the next game with a scintillating backhand pass. In the third set, it was more of the same as Roger broke in the fourth game and again at 5-2 when Dzumhur was serving to stay in the match. The match stats were good and Roger was a staggering 6/8 on break points. Ok just kidding. It’s not all that hard to break when your opponent is 5’9” with very few weapons to speak of. Either way it was another good performance from Roger and he has expended very little energy so far.
Federer vs Monfils
Monfils on the other, who is his next opponent, has done his best to tire himself out with two five setters and a four setter. Today Monfils was a break down in the fourth set and probably the only reason he is even in the fourth round is the crazy French crowd. I felt sorry for Cuevas who is a down-to-earth guy and was basically abused by the rampant French crowd. But hey, I guess they are really desperate since their last male slam winner was in 1983 while at the same time producing loads of top 100 players. Whatever the case may be, Roger now plays the guy Fedfans hoped would lose today. And even though the French like Roger I’m sure they will try to inject Monfils with adrenaline one last time. Monfils is a showman and feeds off the energy from the crowd. He has also won his last two meetings with Roger. Yes, he has already expended a lot of energy, but he is one of the best athletes in tennis and Paris is the last place you want to play him. Given Monfils’ court time so far, I would usually have said Roger in four.
But now I’m not so sure anymore. Monfils is without a shadow of a doubt one of the most talented players in the sport and contrary to Dzumhur, has the weapons to seriously hurt Roger. I expect Roger to win, but it may be harder than I initially thought. Roger’s draw is probably gonna be a lot harder than people initially thought as well. Stan won today and he looked damn comfortable out there against Johnson. He now plays Simon who needed five sets to get past Mahut. Bar something unpredictable again from Stan, I expect him to get through Simon. And I doubt he would tank against Roger this time. Then there is Berdych and Nishikori as well. I think if Roger plays Monfils/Stan/Nishikori before the final that would be a decent test. But whoever he plays he needs to take advantage of this draw because it won’t get much easier. I’m looking forward to Roger playing Monfils anyway, even if it’s only to see the crowd’s reaction.
So tomorrow is the top half’s turn again where there is a bunch of interesting matchups going on. And this time it’s the Djoker’s turn to get Chatrier while Nadal and Murray have to settle for Lenglen. The Djoker will play rising star Kokkinakis which should be a good gauge of his form. Nadal plays Kuznetsov who I don’t know much about while the Murray vs Kyrgios match is one to look forward too. Finally, in the battle of the youngsters Sock and Coric will face off in another interesting match to decide who will face Nadal in the fourth round.