ATP World Tour Finals 2012 Results: Novak Djokovic Top Favorite Going into Semis
He finished the Group A pool by losing only one set. That was a 4-6 drop to Andy Murray in the two's match. Djokovic would come back to win the match in deciding fashion and did the same in a straight-set win over Tomas Berdych on Friday.
Coming out of group play, he has to be considered the favorite for this tournament and the Player of the Year honors that will come soon after this event is over.
Poised to face either Murray or Roger Federer in the final, Djokovic has been playing his best tennis down the stretch. After losses at the Olympics and the U.S. Open to Murray, he's responded by taking out the Brit on one of the sport's biggest stages.
Djokovic knows how important and high-stakes this tournament is. Featuring the world's best eight men's players—sans Rafael Nadel, who is out with an injury—Djokovic has won 43 games while dropping just the first set against Murray.
Here's what he had to say following his victory over Berdych on Friday, per Fox Sports:
''But still, I mean, the fact is that it being the last tournament of the year here in London for most of the players, it is a challenge finding that last drop of energy, physical, mental, to find their best game and go as far as they can.''
He brings up a good point about the rest of the field. Even though many of these players are tired, he should have an edge with the amount of preparation he's been putting in leading up to the tournament. Playing lopsided games will also help keep his legs fresh.
On the other side of the singles tournament, Federer is in complete control of Group B. That side was considered to be the easier of the two, so it should be no surprise if Federer emerges from Saturday's match with Juan Martin del Potro a crisp 3-0.
But the back-and-forth between the two men seems to favor Djokovic, if Federer reaches the final. He's won four of the last five matches against Fed on hard courts, including the semifinals of the 2011 U.S. Open.
With Nadal not around to make this a tougher final foursome, it looks like the Djoker will get David Ferrer in the semifinals, if the Spaniard can beat Janko Tipsarevic on Saturday.
That would make him a favorite to reach the final, and more importantly, maintain his status as the world's No. 1 player. He's on a path to being the sport's next big star and can cement that assertion with an ATP World Tour Finals win.
Ethan Grant is a featured columnist for B/R's Breaking News Team.
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