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Elusive title fires Novak Djokovic

20 August, 2018, 03:23 | Author: Tommie Newton
  • Simona Halep Western & Southern Open Cincinnati

The Cincinnati tile is the one Masters trophy to so far elude Djokovic.

Djokovic has a 23-22 head-to-head edge but Federer has won all three of their Cincinnati final meetings.

Fourth-seeded Juan Martin del Potro beat Hyeon Chung 6-2, 6-3, finally completing the second round in late afternoon.

David Goffin's semi-final retirement set the pair up for a fourth final match-up in OH, the Belgian forced to withdraw due to arm and shoulder discomfort having trailed by one set.

Only a couple of hours later, Djokovic stopped Milos Raonic 7-5 4-6 6-3, improving his career record to a flawless 9-0 against the Canadian. "Today I tried to really focus on just the one match, not thinking that there is possibly going to be two".

"So I just had to hang tough, not get frustrated, and hope that I was not going to throw in a terrible service game or that he was going to connect perfectly". This match was erratic at the start with hardly any rallies.

"I got my energy back for the third set, a momentum shift was good for me".

It was the ninth win without a loss for Djokovic in the series with the Canadian.

Federer has won 14 straight matches in Cincinnati and 17 of his past 18 sets.

"That's why I'm here", he said.

Elsewhere, former world number one Novak Djokovic also won his second match of the day to set up a semi-final clash with Marin Cilic.

Goffin was without the luxury of a bye, and opened his tournament against the in-form Stefanos Tsitsipas, who reached the final in Toronto last week.

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But Djokovic broke back in the eighth game before serving out clinically to secure victory.

"It's been a hard week with rain delays and all that was happening".

"I managed to win the last three matches in the third set".

She will face Kiki Bertens after the Dutchwoman defeated Ukrainian fifth seed Elina Svitolina 6-4, 6-3.

The Romanian lost a title bid in Cincinnati in 2015 against Serena Williams and came up short a year ago to Garbine Muguruza.

"I wasn't sure if we'd be done for the night", he said. "It will be a challenge for me to play another final here and try to win it".

World number 17 Bertens, who played and won two matches on Friday after rain interruptions this week, looked fitter that two-time Wimbledon victor Kvitova in hot, humid conditions.

"I'm feeling great, I'm so happy to win", she said after advancing on her first match point as Kvitova slammed a forehand into the net.

"We played tough match in Queen's, but that's grass and definitely different".

Sabalenka, the 20-year-old number 34 who is still seeking a first career title, dropped the opening set on back-to-back double-faults.

"I didn't like that music in the first few games of the third set", he said, before adding that he would watch the Federer-Goffin semi-final on TV.

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