Day 4 at the 2013 ATP World Tour Finals is sure to feature plenty of fireworks as singles play in Group B continues with two superstars in Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic looking to pick up key victories.
Six-time year-end champion Federer opened up play with a bang, cruising in Thursday's afternoon session and knocking off Richard Gasquet in straight sets. BBC Sport confirmed the result:
The action will continue in prime time when former world No. 1 Novak Djokovic battles Juan Martin del Potro in another pivotal round-robin clash.
With Day 4 in full swing, let's get you up to speed on the latest results from London.
|Group B - (6) Roger Federer def. (8) Richard Gasquet||6-4, 6-3|
|Group B - (2) Novak Djokovic def (4) Juan Martin del Potro||6-3, 3-6, 6-3|
|Group A - (4) Ivan Dodig/Marcelo Melo def. (8) Mariusz Fyrstenberg/Marcin Matkowski||6-3, 3-6, 10-2|
|Group A - (1) Bob Bryan/Mike Bryan def. (5) Aisam-ul-Haq Qureshi/Jean-Julien Rojer||7-6 (7-3), 1-6, 14-12|
Novak Djokovic Seals Semifinal Spot With 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 Win over Juan Martin Del Potro
We know the top two players in the world will be in the semifinals.
A day after World No. 1 Rafael Nadal booked his spot in the Final Four, Novak Djokovic joined him with a three-set win over No. 4 seed Juan Martin Del Potro.
In front of more than 17,000 spectators at the O2 Arena in London, the two split the opening sets. But Djokovic collected himself in decider and controlled most of the action, hitting several beautiful winners and showing zero nerves en route to the impressive victory.
Here's a look at the final stats from the match, courtesy of TennisTV's Twitter feed:
Moreover, as Tennis.com's Twitter feed pointed out, the win extended an impressive streak—much of which has come on the indoor courts:
Djokovic wins 19th straight match, beating del Potro 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, to clinch spot in semis http://t.co/ZLL3l9SgRd— TENNIS.com (@tennis) November 7, 2013
The player joining him out of Group B will be decided on Saturday, as Del Potro and Federer, who have now both lost to Djokovic and beaten Gasquet, square off.
Roger Federer Prevails Over Richard Gasquet; 6-4, 6-3
Swiss legend Roger Federer was on his A game for the most part on Thursday inside the O2 Arena in London, playing an impressive match from start to finish to beat Richard Gasquet and pick up his first win in Group B.
Federer looked sharp from the outset as he quickly broke the Frenchman in the third game of the opening set to take an early advantage. Although he would let him back in the set after being broken in the eighth game, the 17-time Grand Slam champion responded as well as you can, breaking Gasquet right back.
Demoralized, all Gasquet could do was stare down at his racket and shake his head.
Federer would serve out the set to take the opening frame 6-4. The following graphic from TennisTV on Twitter points to Gasquet's conservative, but unsuccessful game plan:
After Federer broke Gasquet immediately to start the second set, a straight-sets win appeared inevitable, until the eighth game, when Gasquet earned himself a break point and an opportunity to even the frame at four games apiece.
But as he was all day long, Federer was up to the challenge and handled the adversity beautifully, saving the pivotal break point en route to winning the game to maintain his break advantage.
The final game of the match was a marathon that saw Gasquet save countless break points before finally giving in and burying the sixth match point into the net.
The biggest difference in Thursday's opening singles match was how the two competitors fared in the big moments, on break points. While Federer was able to break Gasquet four times in 11 tries, the Frenchman went 1-of-6 on break points and will surely be second-guessing himself in the wake of a painful loss.
Federer, who has won seven Wimbledon titles and two year-end championship in London over the past decade, was all smiles after the straight-sets win, per Tennis Stats on Twitter:
Next, Federer will take on Juan Martin del Potro in a match that will likely determine which player advances to the semifinals from Group B and which heads home early.
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