Roger Federer, after avenging his defeat in the finals of the Swiss Indoors to Juan Martin Del Potro, with a win in the quarterfinals of the Paris Masters on Friday, now faces a cracker of a semifinal contest against Novak Djokovic on Saturday.
Roger Federer celebrates his win over Juan Martin Del Potro in the Paris Masters semifinals, November 1
Both players have qualified for the season-ending ATP World Tour Finals in London, but still have plenty to play for with Djokovic looking to keep his slim hopes of finishing the year as world number one alive.
The Serbian must at least make the finals of the Paris Masters to have any chance of overhauling Rafael Nadal, who faces David Ferrer in the other semifinal, at the end of the season, and Djokovic, no doubt, will use that as motivation to get past Federer.
"Roger is probably experiencing the worst season that he had in last 10 years, but he's still a player to beat in every tournament, because he's Roger Federer, because he has won 17 Grand Slams, and we all know how successful a career he has," Djokovic, who beat Stanislas Wawrinka in the quarters, said of his illustrious opponent.
"You cannot underestimate him. I think he's playing really well. I hope that I just can continue on playing well the way I played today. I think it was better than the first two matches, so I have been gradually elevating my performance [and] the level of my game."
Federer looked good against Del Potro in the last-eight, coming through 6-3, 4-6, 6-3 and the Swiss great feels he is definitely regaining his confidence after a difficult few months. "I think we always play well against each other," Federer said of the semifinal matchup. "When we play, it's very athletic. We will both try to be aggressive and take the initiative. So tomorrow [Saturday], given the surface and the conditions here, it's also going to be the case. It's interesting. I always liked this rivalry with Novak.
"I prefer playing him now than four months ago. I'm more confident now and I believe again in my chances. But if I had played a few weeks ago or a few months ago, I might have thought that I was not sure. I believe I can win more now. I will try my best against him because he's again having a very good year."
Where to watch
The match is scheduled for a 7 pm IST start with live coverage on Ten Sports.
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