Paris QF previews and picks: Federer vs. Raonic, Ferrer vs. Nishikori

Fed 1The remaining spots in the World Tour Finals could be decided after two of the Paris quarerfinals are played on Friday. Milos Raonic faces a must-win situation against Roger Federer, while London contenders Kei Nishikori and David Ferrer are going up against each other.

(8) Milos Raonic vs. (2) Roger Federer

Raonic will need to pull off a significant upset and reverse a disturbing trend in his career if he wants to maintain hopes of qualifying for the World Tour Finals by the end of play on Friday in Paris. The 10th-ranked Canadian is 0-14 lifetime against the current top three players in the world (Federer, Novak Djokovic, and Rafael Nadal), including 5-32 in total sets. Raonic has been especially bad against Federer, with an 0-6 record and 3-14 mark in sets (0-10 in the last 10 sets between the two players). The No. 8 seed will get another shot at Federer in the BNP Paribas Masters quarterfinals after taking out Jack Sock and Roberto Bautista Agut.

Like his opponent, Federer also dropped one set en route to the last eight. The second-ranked Swiss fought past Jeremy Chardy 7-6(5), 6-7(5), 6-4 in round two before ousting qualifier Lucas Pouille 6-4, 6-4. He is sporting a perfect 14-0 record this fall, with titles in Shanghai and Basel. Both current form and their past history against each other suggest Federer should once again have little trouble with Raonic.

Pick: Federer in 2 with at least one tiebreaker

(4) David Ferrer vs. (6) Kei Nishikori

Ferrer will know if he is dealing with a must-win situation to reach London by the time he takes the court on Friday night, because Federer-Raonic is a day match. If Raonic goes down, Ferrer locks up a spot in London. Should the underdog spring a surprise, the Spaniard will once again need a victory to avoid elimination. He did it once in the second round against David Goffin then put pressure on Raonic by kicking off Wednesday’s action with a 6-1, 6-2 destruction of Fernando Verdasco.

This will be the eighth career meeting between Ferrer and Nishikori, with the U.S. Open runner-up having taken a 4-3 lead in the series thanks to a pair of tough three-set victories this year in Miami and Madrid. Nishikori is an incredible 51-11 for the season, which–not surprisingly–has him on the brink of World Tour Finals qualification (he clinches a spot with a win on Friday). So far in Paris the No. 6 has defeated Tommy Robredo and Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in three sets. Ferrer seems like a man on a mission this fall and should have more in the tank than Nishikori not only at the end of physically-demanding season but also because he had a much easier third-round match.

Pick: Ferrer in 3

16 Comments on Paris QF previews and picks: Federer vs. Raonic, Ferrer vs. Nishikori

  1. Raonic serving for the match….30-15 up….. very solid performance by the canadian…his chances of qualifying will receive a bigggg boost if he converts one of these two match points….ANDDDD….. he does with a forehand winner ! so Raonic gets a win over federer on indoor hard courts….very good performance

  2. Quite a victory for Milos. I don’t care for his game, but he was very effective today. His inside/out forehand to Fed’s backhand was particularly effective not to mention all of the aces. His return game, for him, was also excellent. Congrats, Milos.

  3. ^^^A good part of the match was a total snoozefest…just aces or missed returns of service, or a one/two serve and volley. Fed served three games in a row that took a minute or less. The tiebreak was interesting and the second set had a bit more action and a few rallies. All in all, not my cup of tea. But, to each his own.

  4. Has Djoker grown up at last or has the penny finally dropped that his stunts don’t cut any ice with anybody? No halloween mask!

    • I think it was probably you Nadline who said once his WTF participation was confirmed he would take his foot off the pedal for the rest of the tournament.

      • Murray ran out of steam playing non stop for 6 weeks. Yes, he’s won for titles but they were dogged fights against Ferrer and Robredo. Murray is still hoping he’ll end the year as #4 so that he doesn’t meet the Big 3 before SF. That’s a small battle between him and Stan.

        At least he’ll be able to go and see his mum dance in Strictly.

      • I can’t bring myself to sit through SCD but I have watched some of the YouTube clips.
        She’s definitely out of her comfort zone 🙂

  5. I think Raonic did Fed a favour by preventing him from ending the year as #1 because Fed would have joined the list of players who ended the year as #1 without winning a slam. Would have been sad for the holder of 17 slams.

  6. Oh Milos won……good for him. Watched a bit of the 1st set, got so bored I changed channels, don’t know what I changed to but glad I made the change!

  7. I did catch the replay of Fed/Raonic, Nice to see Raonic get the win. The tennis wasn’t scintillating, but good for Raonic. I also saw Novak/Murray. It was kind of disappointing. Murray has had a nice run in this tournament, but just can’t seem to hang with Novak in matches these days.

    Now they are showing Nishi/Ferrer. I will have to take a look at that one.

  8. @NNY “he can’t seem to hang with Novak in matches these days”

    If you’re talking about post Wimby there’s a very good reason why he has not hung with Novak. As for last night, you are overlooking while Murray was busting his guts out in Valencia (culminating in an extraordinarily brutal final against Robredo) Novak was at home singing lullabies to his newborn son.

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