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ATP World Tour Finals 2018 Results: Thursday Tennis Scores and Updated Schedule

James Dudko@@JamesDudkoFeatured ColumnistNovember 15, 2018

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 15:  Roger Federer of Switzerland plays a forehand during his round robin match against Kevin Anderson of South Africa during Day Five of the Nitto ATP Finals at The O2 Arena on November 15, 2018 in London, England.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Roger Federer reached the semi-final in the 2018 ATP World Tour Finals after a straight-set win over Kevin Anderson at the O2 Arena in London on Thursday.

Federer and Anderson progressed from Group Lleyton Hewitt on a day when Kei Nishikori and Dominic Thiem were eliminated.

Nishikori couldn't replicate his heroics against Federer on Sunday as he slumped to a straight-set defeat against Thiem. The latter won the opening set emphatically and stayed in control when the Japanese attempted a comeback in the second.

It meant Nishikori was eliminated early, while Federer was still in with an excellent chance of ensuring progress. He did so by beating Anderson, who needed to beat the Swiss to keep Thiem in the tournament.

       

Thursday's Results, Group Lleyton Hewitt

(6) Dominic Thiem bt. (7) Kei Nishikori, 6-1, 6-4

(2) Roger Federer vs. (4) Kevin Anderson, 6-4, 6-3

Friday's Schedule, Group Guga Kuerten

Not before 2 p.m. GMT/9 a.m. ET: (3) Alexander Zverev vs. (8) John Isner

Not before 8 p.m. GMT/3 p.m. ET: (1) Novak Djokovic vs. (5) Marin Cilic

      

Federer had Thiem to thank for his reprieve after the Austrian systematically wore down Nishikori on the centre court. Thiem controlled serve by booming three aces and saving a quartet of break points.

While Nishikori couldn't break serve, Thiem managed to do so three times.

Despite his assured performance, Thiem was still left hoping Anderson would inflict damage on Federer. It didn't seem likely though, with the latter not needing to do too much to move on:

Mikael McKenzie @MMckenzie93

Dominic Thiem does Roger Federer a huge favour beating Kei Nishikori 6-1, 6-4. Federer just needs to win five games, or a set, against Kevin Anderson to progress.

As for Nishikori, he started superbly by upsetting Federer, but it's been all downhill in group play since:

bet365 @bet365

Since beating Roger Federer in straight sets on Sunday, Kei Nishikori has lost to both Kevin Anderson and Dominic Thiem. He's only won six games in four sets. https://t.co/uaa4oGFOKF

It was time for Federer to top the group after seeing off Anderson. The latter smashed 10 aces past his decorated opponent, but Federer still managed to break the South African's serve four times.

Wrapping up the first set at 6-4 put Federer in the last four yet again. Buoyed by the knowledge he was already through, Federer was clinical in the second set, making even shorter work of Anderson.

Federer had continued his dominance of this tournament:

Bastien Fachan @BastienFachan

16 #NittoATPFinals appearances. 15 times through to the semifinals. 14 times by topping his group. Roger. Federer. 🐐

In terms of what comes next, Federer has a chance to avoid top seed Novak Djokovic in the last four if results fall a certain way on Friday:

Russell Fuller @russellcfuller

Federer beats Anderson in straight sets to top the group. He will avoid Djokovic in the SF unless Djokovic loses to Cilic AND Isner beats Zverev

Federer hasn't hit top gear yet, but he would likely still welcome another chance to pit his wits against Djokovic and prove he still has enough left to beat the best when it matters. 

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