ATP Swiss Indoors Basel
Centre Court, Not Before 6pm Local
Roger Federer’s (Player Profile) chances of taking the title in Basel improved mightily with first round exits from Tomas Berdych and Stanislas Wawrinka to lower ranked opponents in the opening round. Federer hopes to avoid the same fate when he plays Denis Istomin (Player Profile) in round two. The Swiss leads the Head to Head with 4-0.
What seemed likely to be a a semi final meeting with Tomas Berdych had he got that far, the draw has opened up for Federer and he will look to take advantage now. He had an easy time of it against Adrian Mannarino, defeating the Frenchman 6-4 6-2, only hitting a mid first set dip where he gave up an early break. From then on, Federer was solid – helped by dropping just three points on his first serve.
Meanwhile, Istomin defeated Horacio Zeballos to book his place in the second round winning 7-5 7-6(3). The Uzbek recovered from failing to take 5 match points on the Zeballos serve at 6-5* to comfortably win the tiebreak 7-3, an early minibreak setting him on his way.
Istomin is 9-5 indoors on the year but recent tournaments in Russia and Malaysia have seen him only defeating Challenger level players, losing when solid ATP players come along. Guillermo Garcia Lopez, Ivo Karlovic and Mikhail Youzhny have been victorious against Istomin the past three tournaments.
In four meetings, Istomin is yet to win a set losing at the Australian Open, Cincinnati, London Olympics and this year in Indian Wells – where he was defeated 6-2 6-3.
Prediction: Roger Federer in straight sets
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