After a busy day filled with some glorious tennis matches on Thursday, the Italian open is all set to host the quarter-finals, and there are are some exciting matches lined up to keep the audience and the fans excited through out the day.
Federer was exhausted by the end of his third round contest against Borna Coric, where he had to save two match points en route to defeating the Croatian in three tough sets. Moreover, there is a good chance Federer is still feeling the effects of a grueling first day, which could play into his match today.
Stefanos Tsitsipas, on the other hand, had an easy day compared to Roger Federer; he had won both his second and third round matches in straight sets, and to top it all off, he defeated local favorite Fabio Fognini in straight sets, 6-4,6-3 before advancing to the quarter-finals. Tsitsipas is soaring high on confidence, and very likely will be in better shape than Federer.
The match promises to be an exciting affari - both players have similar styles, and have employed net-play admirably in the tournament so far.
So, what can Roger Federer do differently to win this match?
As both players are aggressive in their approach, they naturally tend to mishit shots and are often prone to errors. But, if Roger can stay solid from the baseline, and withstand the power of Tsitsipas, the latter will definitely make errors on which Roger can capitalize.
Moreover, Federer's defense was exemplary in the last two matches. His game on clay has been impressive so far, especially on the defensive side of things.
Tsitsipas will look to continue the same momentum he had yesterday, as he attempts to keep building on his win against Nadal in Madrid. He handled the partisan crowd well against Fognini, which speaks to his growing character and composure. He will need to draw on those qualities against Federer, since the crowd will be firmly in the Swiss Maestro's corner. It will be interesting to see if it affects Tsitsipas' focus on court.
If Roger can contain the aggression of Tsitsipas with his masterful defense, Tsitsipas will lay back and provide Roger with the time and space to pounce on his chances. He will also have to get some free points on his serve. Considering the physical condition of both players heading into this match, this seems to be the safest bet for Federer's chances against the young Greek.Published 17 May 2019, 17:27 IST