ATP Finals Final Four Set – Djokovic vs. Anderson, Federer vs. Zverev
(November 16, 2018) Five-time Year-End champion Novak Djokovic will face off against Kevin Anderson on Saturday for a berth in the ATP Finals, final. The No. 1 player beat Marin Cilic 7-6(7), 6-2 on Friday to complete a perfect 3-0 record in the Guga Kuerten Group.
For the Serb, who holds 14 major titles, it’s been a year in which he had to turn his year around from a poor start.
“Well, it’s fantastic year,” said Djokovic who is the year-end No. 1 for a fifth time. “I don’t like to compare, so I can’t tell percentage-wise where I was at Indian Wells, Miami to now. Definitely there’s a significant improvement in the game, in the overall feel, the way I go about my game, the way I feel on the court in terms of confidence and comfort level.
“Obviously I knew, even when I was far from my best, and that was around Indian Wells, Miami time, beginning of clay, that it will take time. I really trusted the process, even though it was frustrating at times.
“But in the end, the self-belief prevailed, and of course the support of the team that created this long-term plan, strategy with me. We had objectives and goals. As I was mentioning before, US Open was a target where I would hopefully peak and play my best. But it came during grass court season, so it came before.
“It was obviously more than welcome, you know, in our overall plan. So yeah, I mean, the run is phenomenal. I mean, I’m very grateful that I managed to turn things around that drastically in a way because I was 22 in the world, and I wasn’t playing even close to my best.
“To know that I ended the year at No. 1, of course, unfortunately due also to Nadal’s injury, but the way I played in the last five, six months, just makes me very proud.”
Djokovic is 13-0 against Top 10 players since Wimbledon. He is 7-1 against Anderson, including beating the South African in the Wimbledon final.
The other semifinal will pit No. 2 seed Roger Federer against Alexander Zverev. Zverev booked his spot in the final four with a 7-6(5), 6-3 win over John Isner in the afternoon session. Federer leads the head-to-head record at 3-2.
“Obviously it’s going to be a very difficult match,” noted Zverev. “I mean, him on this surface, indoor court, he’s an unbelievable player. Played him a few times in all different conditions, all different surfaces.
“As I said, I’ll prepare myself for a very tough match. I hope it will be a good match, as well.”
At 21, the German is the youngest semifinalist since 2009 and the first German since 2003.