Not only did Roger Federer pick up his first clay court win of the season this week in Istanbul, it was also his 200th clay court win on the tour, which is an impressive milestone for player who has only won one Grand Slam on that surface. Next up for Federer is a contest against Daniel Gimeno-Traver, whom he has never faced previously on the ATP World Tour.
Up against Jarkko Nieminen in his first match on clay, Roger Federer needed only straight sets to get past his Finish opponent. Federer struck nine aces, won 94% of his first service points and did not face a single break point on serve to close out the match 6-2, 7-5 in exactly one hour. It also extended his head-to-head lead to an impeccable 15-0 against Nieminen.
“I’m happy that I won my first match ever in Turkey,” he said. “In the second set Jarkko started playing better and I’m happy that I managed to close the match. I have a day off and I will enjoy and do a sightseeing trip by boat on the Bosphorus to see some more of this beautiful city,” he said.
Earlier that very day, Daniel Gimeno-Traver managed to get past Mikhail Kukushkin in straight sets to secure his spot in the quarter-final stage against Federer. He fired five aces , won 79% of his first service points and broke serve on four accoasions to secure the win in 70 minutes.
This is just the first time that Federer and Gimeno-Traver will cross paths on the professional tour. Federer looked fit, healthy and motivated to perform during the inaugural TEB BNP Paribas Istanbul Open event and that is unlikely to bode well for the Spaniard, even though he is on a hot streak himself. The two in-form players should make for an entertaining match on Friday evening.
Prediction: Roger Federer in Straight Sets