MX23RW : Monday, December 10 22:33:26

Result: Federer recovers from opening-day defeat to sweep aside Thiem

Result: Federer recovers from opening-day defeat to sweep aside Thiem
© Reuters
The Swiss raced to a 6-2 6-3 victory at the O2.

Roger Federer bounced back from his opening-day shocker against Kei Nishikori by sweeping aside Dominic Thiem at the ATP Finals.

The 37-year-old six-time winner knew anything other than victory would see him fail to qualify for the last four for only the second time in 16 appearances at the O2.

But it was a vastly more upbeat Federer who pulverised Thiem 6-2 6-3 than the grouchy character who had trudged off court 48 hours earlier.

However, the 20-time grand slam champion still needs to beat the in-form Kevin Anderson, who knocked him out at Wimbledon and who dropped just one game against Nishikori in Tuesday afternoon's match, if he is to clamber out of the group.

Federer grabbed a break in the third game against a nervous-looking Thiem and a second for 5-2 on his way to taking the first set.

Thiem, who also lost his first match, to Anderson, dropped serve at the start of the second set and at again at the end as Federer wrapped up victory in an hour and six minutes.

Roger Federer celebrates his victory over Dominic Thiem (Adam Davy/PA).
Roger Federer celebrates his victory over Dominic Thiem (Adam Davy/PA).

He said: "It feels good, I'm very happy I showed a reaction after the last match against Kei.

"No match is easy here and it's not something I'm used to, losing and then coming back and playing again, but it's a great challenge and I'm happy with my attitude and how I played.

"Today I was more positive, more happy on the court and I reminded myself what a privilege it is to play here at the O2."

Anderson had previously underlined his credentials as a major contender in London with a brutal destruction of Nishikori.

Kevin Anderson dropped just one game in his crushing win over Kei Nishikori (Adam Davy/PA).
Kevin Anderson dropped just one game in his crushing win over Kei Nishikori (Adam Davy/PA).

Japanese world number nine Nishikori was on cloud nine after stunning Federer, but he was brought crashing back down to earth the O2 debutant.

Nishikori was staring down the barrel of the ultimate humiliation, and only the second 6-0 6-0 defeat in the history of the Finals, following a ruthless display by the South African.

Yet at 6-0 5-0, and with less than an hour on the clock, the 28-year-old finally managed to string four serves together to get on the scoreboard and avoid the dreaded 'double bagel'.

It only delayed the inevitable, though, as Anderson duly served out for a 6-0 6-1 victory in 63 hopelessly one-sided minutes.

"That's amongst the matches best I've played," said Anderson.

"I got off to a really good start and I think I did a really good job constantly applying the pressure and not letting up.

"I was growing in confidence and he sort of probably was going a little the other way, which is tough given the situation."

Jamie Murray (right) and Bruno Soares celebrate winning their doubles match (Adam Davy/PA).
Jamie Murray (right) and Bruno Soares celebrate winning their doubles match (Adam Davy/PA).

Anderson is in pole position, but qualification for the semi-finals is still possible for all four players.

Britain's Jamie Murray and Brazilian partner Bruno Soares clinched their place in the semi-finals of the doubles for the third straight year.

Murray and Soares ran out 6-4 6-3 winners against Colombian duo Juan Sebastian Cabal and Robert Farah to ensure their progress with a match to spare.

Share this article now:

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel

Subscribe to our Newsletter


Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel
Login, I already have my ad-free pass
Log in to customise Sports Mole
Buy ad-free access (show me the options)
Buy monthly ad-free access for £1.20/month
Buy yearly ad-free access for £12 (2 months free)
Settings - Logout - Manage your account
Settings - Logout - Manage your account