Roger Federer takes the confidence of a 6-0 career record over Feliciano Lopez into his semi-final at the Swiss Indoors as the top seed kept up his bid for a home trophy hat-trick on Friday.
Federer eased past Italian Simone Bolelli, claiming his 61st victory of the season, 6-2, 6-3 in their quarter-final. Dubai finalist Lopez upset American fourth seed James Blake 6-4, 7-6 (9/7) as the Spaniard went through on his fourth match point, leaving Blake’s effort to qualify for the Masters Cup in Shanghai stalled.
The American missed on all eight of his break point chances. Final jockeying for positions at the eight-man year-end Masters Cup will take place next week as the regular ATP season ends at the Paris Masters.
Federer, who began his career at his local event, recovered well after a testing second round clash with Jarkko Niemimen, as 42nd-ranked Bolelli failed to pose any major problems.
Bolelli rallied briefly in the penultimate game, saving three match points before the Swiss superstar secured victory with two aces and a service winner to wrap it up in just over an hour.
“Bolelli’s difficult, so I had to stay alert,” Federer said of the Munich finalist. “But when I got settled in this was the optimum result for me.”
Second seed David Nalbandian reached the semis for the fourth time in seven appearances to set up a showdown with Davis Cup teammate Juan Martin Del Potro.
Second seed Nalbandian, the 2002 champion, is fresh from a loss to his talented 20-year-old compatriot last week in the Madrid Masters third round. Del Potro, 20, and ranked ninth in the world to Nalbandian’s eighth, beat Russian Igor Andreev 6-4, 7-5, while Nalbandian accounted for German qualifier Benjamin Becker 7-6 (7/4), 6-4.
Nalbandian is devoting all of his energy toward the Nov. 21 to Nov. 23 Davis Cup final in Mar del Plata against Spain, uninterested in qualifying for the Masters Cup and refusing this year to make a trip across the Pacific. Del Potro, young and eager at age 20, is keen to make it to both Shanghai, where he stands seventh in the race for one of three remaining spots, and the Davis Cup final.
Del Potro moves from strength to strength as he won his 35th match from his last 38, including a run to four straight titles over the summer. He also finished runner-up in Tokyo, then reached his first Masters Series quarter-final at Madrid, where he lost to Federer. The youngster now stands 44-11 on the season with a 1-1 record against his senior compatriot.
Chen Jifang hits the gym for at least two hours every day and has the physique to prove it. At nearly 70, she is being held up as a shining example as China orders its vast population to get fit and lose the bulge. The grandmother from Shanghai has become a minor celebrity in in the past few months after her newfound and unlikely love for working out made national headlines. After becoming a gym regular in December 2018, Chen lost 14kg in three months, and now sports the kind of flat stomach and toned muscles that people decades younger aspire to. She
ANOTHER SCANDAL: Searches focused on several riders, including Dayer Quintana, a source said, while the two being held were reportedly a doctor and physiotherapist French police on Monday detained two people as part of an investigation into suspected doping in the Arkea-Samsic team at this year’s Tour de France, prosecutors announced. The probe is the first significant one in several years for the repeatedly scandal-hit tour, which on Sunday wrapped up in Paris with a victory for 21-year-old Tadej Pogacar, who became the youngest winner in more than a century. Prosecutor Dominique Laurens in Marseille said in a statement that an investigation was being carried out into a “small part” of France-based Arkea-Samsic, without specifying who had been placed in custody. Laurens added that the two
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