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Australian Open 2020: Roger Federer vs John Millman Preview and prediction

ANALYST
Preview
Modified 24 Jan 2020, 12:31 IST

Roger Federer at the 2020 Australian Open
Roger Federer at the 2020 Australian Open

The 20-time Grand Slam champion Roger Federer has begun his Australian Open 2020 campaign on a positive note with commendable, straight-set victories over American Steve Johnson and Serbia’s Filip Krajinović in his first two rounds at the Melbourne Park and will now take on the local lad, Australia’s John Millman in his upcoming 3rd round encounter.

Following his win at Melbourne back in 2018, the Swiss maestro has failed to reach even the semi-finals in the subsequent three hard court majors. With Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic closing in on his tally of 20 majors, it is imperative that Federer gathers steam in his quest towards his 21st major title.


John Millman upset Federer in the 4th round at US Open in 2018
John Millman upset Federer in the 4th round at US Open in 2018

On the ATP tour, Federer leads Millman 2-1 so far and it was at the 4th round of US Open in 2018, where the 20-time Grand Slam champ tasted his only defeat against the Australian in four tight sets. After losing the first set, Millman won the next three to upset Federer 3-6, 7-5, 7-6, 7-6.

While Australian Open is Federer’s first tournament this year, his 30-year old opponent has been in decent form coming into this tournament following memorable victories over Karen Khachanov and Felix Auger-Aliassime at ASB Classic, Auckland and at the ATP Cup respectively earlier this month.

While the 6-time Australian Open champion Federer won four titles in 2019, he succumbed to several surprising and shocking losses in the past year and against a potentially unpredictable opponent in Millman, the Swiss maestro would aim to implement his plans precisely to produce as clinical a performance as he can so as to build momentum before he enters into the business week of the tournament.

The courts at the Rod Laver Arena are much faster as compared to those at the Flushing Meadows, New York in 2018 and that would only aid Federer as he would emphasise on playing volleys in a bid to keep the points shorter. As far as Millman is concerned, in his upcoming tie against Federer, it is imperative that he brings out his best service game to the courts if he fancies any chances of upsetting the great Swiss again.

Can Millman, replicating his performance of US Open 2018, stun Federer or will the Swiss maestro cruise to a routine win over the 30-year old Australian in his 3rd round tie? Do watch the drama unfold as Federer takes on Millman on day 5 of the Australian Open 2020.

Prediction: Roger Federer to win in straight sets.

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Published 23 Jan 2020, 12:34 IST
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