Shanghai Open 2010 Men’s Singles Final Preview

Creative Commons Licensephoto credit:Kenneth Hong

Update: Sunday 17 October at 6:30pm Shanghai time. Murray wins in an amazing display 6-3 6-2…

The 2010 Shanghai Open men’s singles semi final matches have been completed. The Men’s Singles Final is a rematch of the 2010 Australian Open Final and the 2010 Canadian Open Final. Roger Federer and Andy Murray will meet for the 13th time in what is set to be a great battle at 4:30m on Sunday 17 October on the Stadium Court at the Qi Zhong Stadium in Shanghai.

Last year was the first year that Shanghai was held as an ATP Tour tournament and included as one of the nine ATP World Tour Masters 1000 tournaments making it one of THE major tournaments of each year. Shanghai offers 3.24 million US dollars in prize money. The title sponsorship rights mean that it is officially called the 2010 Shanghai Rolex Masters. We will keep you updated here at OCA by updating the score as the final progresses today.

In the first semi final we saw 23 year old Andy Murray of Scotland playing a very defensive first set against Juan Monaco that was very competitive and a close struggle. Once the 1.9m Murray took the first set 6-4 his confidence and aggressive play increased substantially to allow him to prevail 6-1 in the 2nd set. The match went for 1 hour  and 25 minutes now giving Murray a 2-1 edge over Monaco in their head-to-head battles.

Afterwards Murray revealed that he really enjoys playing on the Deco Turf hard courts and using the HEAD ATP tennis balls, “This is a surface for me that is very good, the ball bounces relatively high. I feel like I move well on these courts and I can still get my serve through the court to get enough free points.” Murray has won 5 of his 6 Masters 1000 singles finals and 4 of his 5 Masters 1000 matches against his opponent in the Shanghai final.

In the second semi final the 29 year old Roger Federer of Switzerland and 23 year old Novak Djokovic continued on from where they left off at the 2010 US Open semi final with fantastic tennis. This time however, the 1.85m Federer made the most of his chances, whereas the 1.88m Djokovic of Serbia missed his chances in the critical first set, that could have gone either way.

The disappointment showed as Djokovic went down a double service break in the 2nd set to lose 7-5 6-4 in 1 hour and 42 minutes. Federer avenged his US Open defeat and improved to 11-6 against the 2008 Australian Open singles champion in their head-to-head matches. The 16-time Grand Slam singles champion will be looking to avenge his defeat by Murray in the final and to equal Rafael Nadal’s record of 18 ATP World Tour Masters 1000 singles titles.

The 29 year old Federer trails the 23 year old Murray by 5 wins to 7 in their previous matches. The 1.9m Murray won their most recent encounter 7-5 7-5 in the final of the Canadian Open in Toronto, whilst the 1.85m Federer won their only other match this year 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 (13-11) in the Australian Open final in Melbourne.

After winning through to the final Murray said he preferred to play Federer and also hinted on what he plans to do against him in the final when he said, “I do really enjoy playing Roger, it’s obviously a great experience every time you get to play against him. I think when I played Roger in Toronto, I played a lot more aggressive, didn’t give him many chances to really dictate the points, especially on my serve.”

Murray uses the HEAD YouTek Radical MP tennis racquet. To get the best deal in Hong Kong on tennis racquets and tennis gear click here. Pictured above is Federer demonstrating great preparation for his single handed backhand drive during a practice session at the 2010 US Open.

Murray has won 7 of the 10 matches against Federer when they’ve played using a best-of 3-sets format, whereas he lost both matches against the former World No.1 when they played using the best-of 5-sets format. Murray has been a runner-up twice in Grand Slam singles finals, at the 2008 US Open and the 2010 Australian Open, both times to Federer.

Federer said of his match with Djokovic and his plans against Murray in the final that, “Against the best players you have to stay aggressive. Novak stays on the offensive when he defends, whereas Andy has much more feel and plays with his slice. He finds a way into the point. But the rough game plan needs to be the same. I need to take it to the opponent and play well because these guys don’t give you easy victories anymore.”

Federer after recent suggestions that he should retire, that Rafael Nadal is the greatest player of all time and that he will never be ranked No.1 again looks super alert and focused on proving these naysayers wrong. The 16-time Grand Slam singles champion and 17-time Masters 1000 singles champion has not lost a set in Shanghai (neither has Murray) and would dearly love to win another major title to build towards his goal.

Federer made it clear what his goal is now in his post match interview when he said, “This isn’t why I’m here in Shanghai, to get back to No.2 in the world. That’s a nice bonus. But the focus is trying to win the finals tomorrow. Obviously if I want to get back to world No. 1 at some stage, I need to win tournaments and get deep into tournaments. That’s why I need to beat the best to get there.”

Federer lost his No.2 ranking to Djokovic when he lost to him at the US Open but earned it back by beating Djokovic in Shanghai, which puts him in the box seat to be the No.2 seed at the ATP Tour Finals. This means that it would be possible for a semi final or singles final showdown in the last match of the year between the World No.1 and the World No.2. Wouldn’t that be a perfect end to another great year of the best sport in the world. Prediction: Federer in 3 great sets.

Stay tuned to this tennis website for full coverage of every Grand Slam tournament and every major women’s and men’s tennis tournament on the WTA Tour and ATP Tours. Click this link for further details about the Shanghai Open including the schedule of play -> Shanghai Open 2010: October 9-17.

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