ATP Paris, Quarter-Finals Preview: Ferrer v Nishikori, Federer v Raonic

Andy Murray confirmed his place at the World Tour Finals with a routine victory over Grigor Dimitrov, 6-3 6-3.  The race for the O2 continues to hot up; it seems Kei Nishikori and Tomas Berdych need just one more victory to officially confirm their places in London.  Andrew Moss (@mossoire) on Twitter is the best person to follow if you want to know about qualification scenarios.  The quarter-finals of Paris will take place on Friday…


1. David Ferrer v Kei Nishikori


Both hunting for the final places at the World Tour Finals, David Ferrer and Kei Nishikori will meet in a crucial quarter-final in Paris.  Nishikori has needed three sets to win his first two matches; on Wednesday, he came from a set down against the machine that is, Tommy Robredo, 6-7(4) 6-2 6-3.  In his third round match, Nishikori encountered some resistance from Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in the second set, but was the more solid and focused player to progress 6-1 4-6 6-4 win in two hours and 9 minutes.  Tsonga wobbled on serve at the end, producing a double fault on the penultimate point of the match.  Ferrer had no such problems on Thursday as he sailed through his third round match, beating Fernando Verdasco, 6-1 6-2 in just 54 minutes to record his second victory against his fellow compatriot in the last week.

Nishikori and Ferrer haven’t played since Madrid earlier this year where Nishikori prevailed in a thrilling semi-final, 7-6(5) 5-7 6-3 that finished four minutes shy of the three hour mark.  It was one of my favourite ATP matches of the entire year.  The match they played before that in Miami DID break the three hour mark.  Nishikori also won, 7-6(7) 2-6 7-6(9) in three hours and five minutes.  Nishikori has always been vulnerable health-wise and has played two three setters in as many days on top of a brutal year.  Equally, Ferrer has played a lot of tennis in the last month.  I’m sticking by my original prediction of Kei…

Prediction: Nishikori d. Ferrer in 3 sets

2. Roger Federer v Milos Raonic

Milos Raonic must beat Roger Federer for the first time in his career on Friday to keep his hopes of qualifying for the top eight in London alive.  Federer has beaten Raonic on six occasions; in their two encounters in 2014, Federer won 6-4 6-4 6-4 at Wimbledon and 6-2 6-3 in Cincy.  In Paris, Federer did enough to beat Lucas Pouille in the third round, 6-4 6-4.  The Frenchman gave an excellent account of himself.  I liked how he showed initative on the break points and a willingness to step it up when he needed too.  Federer didn’t face any break points, losing just 12 points on serve throughout the 74 minute contest.  Raonic impressed me during the middle of 2014, but to miss out on the World Tour Finals again would be disappointing.  I’d be really surprised if he has what it takes to upset Federer in this match-up…

Prediction: Federer d. Raonic in 2 sets

Tomas Berdych v Kevin Anderson

It has taken a while, but Kevin Anderson seems to have finally moved on from a crushing quarter-final loss in Canada to Grigor Dimitrov where he was unable to convert match points.  Anderson enjoyed his third win of the year over Stan Wawrinka, prevailing in a lengthy three setter, 6-7(2) 7-5 7-6(3).  Wawrinka served for the match *5-4 in the third set and Anderson had two match points on Wawrinka’s serve at *5-6.  This was a solid effort from Anderson to hold his nerve and win the third set tiebreak.  His reward is another match-up with Tomas Berdych.  In one of the most peculiar H2H records, Berdych has won all 11 matches against the South African player, of which eight have been decided in straight sets……………………………..

Prediction: Berdych d. Anderson in 2 sets

And…….. Novak Djokovic v Andy Murray

A lot of people seem to be backing Murray in this one.  It doesn’t help that I haven’t watched either of Murray’s matches this week but beating Djokovic? I’m still not convinced…

8 thoughts on “ATP Paris, Quarter-Finals Preview: Ferrer v Nishikori, Federer v Raonic

  1. I’d like to think it will be another comfortable win for Roger, but having dropped sets to Karlovic, Istomin and Chardy, and with Pouille having held his own serve quite well yesterday, I think there’s a chance Milos could make a game of it. Having said that I think Roger’s got his number even when he’s on form.
    Murray to battle past Novak and Nishi to battle past Daveed, both in epic three set fashion. Berdych 7-6, 7-6 to really make Anderson’s 12th straight defeat taste extra bitter!


    • Raonic seems to be playing pretty average tennis of late, also.
      I’m liking seeing Murray doing well…but I hope it all ends here with Djokovic because I want to see him in the final.


  2. Didn’t your original predictions have Djokovic out in the quarter’s?
    Nole needs to really put pressure on Murray’s serve and push him around the court. As soon as he’s frustrated he loses energy and makes silly mistakes.


    • Yes, I had Djokovic out to Dimitrov. I think Murray’s played himself into form, but i’m still not convinced he will have enough in the tank to beat Djokovic. I had Novak out because I thought he would be distracted after the birth of his child last week. I watched chunks of his first two matches and that doesn’t seem to be the case at all.


  3. Raonic won !!! He seems to be really good those days…
    Moreover, today Berdych stats are very poor (less than 60% first service)

    Berdych had a bye so he had only 2 match to reach the semi final. (Lopez, 1H34, and Anderson today 2h36) 4h10
    while Raonic spent 2H03 (Sock)+1h36(bautista)+1H34(federer) 5h13
    Not really significant gap.

    So my prediction for next round is Raonic to reach the final.


  4. Anybody see the Ferrer Nishikori match? What an absolute battle. I love Ferrer’s fight, it really is something else, and I really feel for him coming so close and missing out. But I think it’s good news for London Kei had made it through.


    • Yeah, I don’t think anybody works or fights as hard as Ferrer. He’s a prime example of maximising your talents.
      I’m pleased we get a Nishikori vs Djokovic match though. After the US Open I think Novak will be out for blood.


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