Roger Federer and Alexandr Dolgopolov will be going head-to-head for the third time in their careers when they clash in round two of the Australian Open on Wednesday afternoon. Federer has won both of their previous encounters. He led 6-4, 5-2 when Dolgopolov retired at the 2010 Swiss Indoors Basel. The Swiss then cruised 6-3, 6-1 in Indian Wells two seasons ago. Check out the Federer vs Dolgopolov H2H results.
Although he is a massive underdog for obvious reasons, Dolgopolov should–if nothing else–get more games this time around. At No. 35 in the world, the Ukrainian is undoubtedly one of the best and most talented unseeded players in this tournament. He kicked off his fortnight with a 6-1, 3-6, 6-4, 6-2 victory over Ricardas Berankis on Monday.
Federer wasted no time getting through his opener, as he made 6-2, 6-1, 6-2 mincemeat out of Nikoloz Basilashvili in just one hour and 12 minutes. While he is far too experienced to look past the early-round tasks at hand, Federer is ultimately bidding for a fifth Australian Open winner’s trophy and an 18th Grand Slam title overall.
“I think it’s going to be very tough, to be honest,” Federer said following his win over Basilashvili. “I’ve practiced with Dolgopolov in the offseason in Dubai; had some great practice sessions together there, this year and last year. I know him very well.
This is going to be a different challenge than the first round. [Basilashvili] was more of an unexperienced player, but still dangerous and still a good player. But Dolgopolov is a different player–a different level. He’s been there before. He’s got the fitness, the power, the speed, tennis IQ, all that. It’s going to be a big challenge.”
Unlike his date with Basilashvili, Federer will at least be tested in one or two sets. But Dolgopolov will not have the belief necessary to make this a particularly competitive contest.
Prediction – Federer in straight sets
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