Roger Federer: Breaking Down Fed-Ex's Next Likely Opponents

Tim Keeney@@t_keenContributor ISeptember 2, 2012

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 01:  Roger Federer of Switzerland reacts after defeating Fernando Verdasco of Spain during their men's singles third round match on Day Six of the 2012 US Open at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 1, 2012 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

To say Roger Federer has had it easy up until this point in New York would be an understatement. 

In his first three U.S. Open matches, Fed-Ex has yet to lose a set and has only been broken one time. For the second major in a row, he is looking like early-2000s Roger Federer.

And that's a scary sight for whoever is standing on the other side of that net.

Nonetheless, a small look forward at the men's draw reveals some interesting matchups down the line. Should Federer continue his top form, no one will beat him. But if he happens to suffer some small slip-ups, there is upset potential waiting in the following rounds. 

Note: For a complete look at the men's draw, check out


Fourth Round: Mardy Fish

For the most part, Federer has dominated the American, going 8-1 against him with his only loss coming at the Pacific Life Open way back in 2008.

The most recent hardcourt match between these two came just a couple of weeks ago in Cincinnati, but it wasn't close. Federer proved he still had Fish's number and the American soil shouldn't be a factor, as he rolled to 6-3, 7-6(4) victory.

Federer's dominance in that match came via the serve. He only delivered five aces, but he got in 74 percent of his first serves and won 88 percent of those points. 

Fish simply couldn't return Federer's serve, and as a result never had a break opportunity. It's pretty hard to win when that happens. 

Especially in front of his home crowd, Fish will serve as a formidable opponent, but it would take a monstrous upset to unseat Federer. 


Quarters: Tomas Berdych

Berdych still has to get past Nicolas Almagro, but he's won two of their three hardcourt matches, so we'll go with the Czech advancing to the quarters. 

Should that happen, the World No. 7 will give Federer all he can handle. Berdych beat Fed-Ex in 2011 in Cincinnati the last time these two faced each other on a hardcourt, and has pulled off three wins in their last six matchups, including a victory at Wimbledon in 2010.

Still, that wasn't the same Federer that we have seen the past two months, so even though Berdych has proven to be a worthy competitor over the last few years, Fed-Ex should roll to the semis with the way he's been playing. 

It just won't be as easy as you would assume. 


Semis: Andy Murray

A potential Federer-Novak Djokovic or even Murray-Djokovic final may await, but considering the last two months, this might just be the matchup everyone is looking forward to.

Federer and Murray have been establishing quite the rivalry. 

In 17 career matches, Fed has won eight and Murray has won nine, but that back-and-forth action was put on hold in 2011, as the duo never matched up for battle. 2012, however, has been far from disappointing. 

Federer took out Murray in straight sets in Dubai to start the year, but things really heated up in England. Fed-Ex once again bested the Englishman, this time for the Wimbledon crown, but Murray came right back the next month and floored Federer for Olympic gold.

If we're lucky, they'll meet up for a fourth time in New York and now that we're off the grass, don't be surprised if the action is a lot closer.