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Shanghai Masters 1000: Roger Federer Vs David Goffin, Round of 16, preview and prediction

ANALYST
Preview
139   //    10 Oct 2019, 10:41 IST

2019 Rolex Shanghai Masters - Roger Federer
2019 Rolex Shanghai Masters - Roger Federer

After a dominant first set win against Spain’s Albert Ramos Vinolas in his Round of 32 encounter at Shanghai, Roger Federer dug deep in the second to win the contest in straight sets 6-2, 7-6(7-5).

The spirited performance from the Spaniard in the second set pushed Federer to play aggressively and the Swiss maestro responded with some of his vintage tennis, bringing a sense of delight and relief to the millions of his fans worldwide.

After overcoming the Ramos Vinolas test, Federer now meets Belgian David Goffin in his upcoming Round of 16 encounter, aiming to secure a quarter-final berth in the penultimate Masters 1000 event of the year.

In his earlier rounds, David Goffin cruised to an easy win over Richard Gasquet 6-2, 6-3 in his first round at Shanghai and was in the ascendance 6-2, 3-0 in the second round match as well, before his opponent Mikhail Kukushkin retired.

Roger Federer (L) and David Goffin
Roger Federer (L) and David Goffin

Having already faced each other on 10 occasions in the past, the upcoming battle between Federer and Goffin will be their 11th on the tour and the 3rd face-off this year. The 38-year old Swiss dominates their rivalry by a whopping margin of 9-1 and had beaten the Belgian comprehensively on both the times in 2019 when the duo squared-off against each other in the final at Halle and in the 4th round encounter at the US Open as well.

Except for his early exit at the Australian Open at the beginning of the year, Roger Federer had a decent run on the tour till the Wimbledon final in 2019. In that period, the 20-time Grand Slam champion won titles in Dubai, Miami, and Halle and was a finalist at Indian Wells and Wimbledon alongside his semi-final appearance at the French Open for the first time since 2012.

However, ever since he suffered painful loss at the hands of Novak Djokovic in the finals at Wimbledon, the Swiss maestro has appeared to be vulnerable and has given us an impression of being circumspect, succumbing to early exits at Cincinnati Masters and the US Open in the second half of the year so far.

At 38, no doubt, every loss would feel like a huge burden to overcome for Federer and would anxiously hope to return to winning ways at Shanghai Masters, the tournament which he has won twice in the past.

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David Goffin
David Goffin

On the contrary, after a disappointing 2018, David Goffin is enjoying a new lease of life so far on the tour this year. While he hasn’t managed to win a title so far in 2019, Goffin can draw huge inspiration from the fact that he reached finals at Cincinnati Masters and Halle Open this year and once again is taking steps in a positive direction so far in 2019.

Federer is expected to face Alexander Zverev or Andrey Rublev in the quarter-final and potentially Dominic Thiem in the semi-finals and against Goffin, he would look forward to ensure that he gets all his bases covered before he dives deep into the tournament, facing potentially dangerous opponents hereafter.

Will the upcoming battle between Federer and Goffin unfold along the lines of expected patterns or can Goffin produce a show of exuberant tennis to stun the 20-time Grand Slam champion?

It would be intriguing to closely follow Federer’s journey at the ongoing Shanghai Masters 1000!

Prediction: Roger Federer to win in straight sets.

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