Roger Federer def Feliciano Lopez 63 63 75
At this year’s US Open, the conversation leans more toward Roger Federer’s tweaked back than his trademark, graceful dominance. He worked through consecutive 5-setters with Frances Tiafoe and Mikhail Youzhny to reach Round-3; the first time that has ever happened in Flushing.
The Day Session ran well into Saturday’s Night Session. Karolina Pliskova overcame match point to defeat Shuai Zhang in a decider. Coco Vandeweghe took-out Agnieszka Radwanska in a three-hour thriller. Rafael Nadal struggled with Leonardo Mayer, needing over an hour to finally convert on his 14th break opportunity. After losing the first set in a tie-break, the World #1 finally crushed the Argentine’s will, and cruised to victory.
The damage was done. It was 9:00pm. The roof was closed. Federer fans stood outside Ashe, clutching coveted tickets, soaking up the rain. Roger and Feliciano finally entered a half-empty “Thunderdome” around 9:30, as stadium crews feverishly cleaned-up what they could. By the time most fans found their seats, Federer was already up a set and break.
Roger’s rediscovered rhythm
In just one hour and 46-minutes, Roger Federer dismantled Feliciano Lopez for the 13th time; his fifth consecutive straight-sets win over the Spaniard since their epic triple tie-break tussle on clay in Madrid six years prior. Next up: Germany’s Phillip Kohlschreiber, who is 0-11 against Federer since their first meeting on Halle’s turf 12-years-ago.
In a draw minus Djokovic, Murray, Wawrinka, Raonic and Nishikori – by all appearances, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal may finally clash in Queens come the Semifinals. While the two have faced each other 37-times – including three Federer victories this year in Melbourne, Indian Wells and Miami – they have never squared-off under the lights in Arthur Ashe Stadium at the US Open.