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Federer vs Rublev ATP Cincinnati live streaming, preview and tips - Federer and Rublev clash for the first time in R16

Andrew Hendrie in ATP Tour 15 Aug 2019
  • Roger Federer vs Andrey Rublev is live from Cincinnati around 2.30pm local time on Thursday (7.30pm BST)
  • It's the first career meeting between the pair
Roger Federer (PA Images)

Roger Federer continues his bid for a record-extending eighth Cincinnati Masters title when he takes on rising star Andrey Rublev for the first time in the Round of 16 on Thursday.

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Seven-time Cincinnati Masters champion Roger Federer targets another quarter-final at the Western & Southern Open when he squares off against young gun Andrey Rublev on Thursday.

Playing his first match since squandering two championship points in a heartbreaking Wimbledon final loss against Novak Djokovic last month, Federer largely untroubled in a rain-affected clash with Cordoba champion Juan Ignacio Londero on Tuesday night. The Swiss broke once in each set and was dominant in the majority of baseline exchanges and on serve, closing out a 6-3 6-4 victory in just 61 minutes to ease into the third round.

"Conditions are fast. We barely had any rallies in the first set. It was just bang-bang tennis," Federer said. "He had a good forehand. He hides it well with the grip, and because I have never played him before, it's hard to see the release happening. I think he actually can play very well on the faster hard court. He moves well, can take the ball early.
"[I’m] very happy. I thought it was tricky with the rain delay and everything, but I’m happy to be back on the courts,” Federer added. “It’s totally different to the grass courts and the clay courts we have seen, so this is the beginning of a long, long hard-court swing. So it’s nice to start off with a win."

Federer actually lost four of his first five matches in Cincinnati, but since 2005 he’s only tasted defeat five times, winning the title in 2005, 2007, 2009, 2010, 2012, 2014 and 2015, while he finished runner-up to Djokovic last year, which was his first loss in a final at the tournament.

Federer, who celebrated his 38th birthday last week, is aiming for his fourth title of the season this week in Cincinnati. The Swiss is currently 39-5 for 2019, starting the year with a disappointing fourth round exit to Stefanos Tsitsipas at the Australian Open, but picking things up immediately after by winning his 100th career title in Dubai, finishing runner-up at Indian Wells to Dominic Thiem and cruising to the Miami Masters title with a series of dominant displays. The Swiss then put together a solid clay season upon his return to the surface, reaching back-to-back quarter-finals in Madrid and Rome, before advancing to the French Open semi-finals, where once again arch-rival Rafael Nadal proved too strong on the dirt.

The World No. 3 picked up his third title of the season in Halle, but as mentioned, suffered an agonising defeat in the final of Wimbledon to Djokovic, missing two match points at 8-7, 40-15 in the fifth set to lose 13-12 in a deciding set tiebreak. The pair could be on course for a rematch in the semi-finals, but first Federer must get past one of the brightest young talents in the game.


Andrey Rublev was actually the first member of the ‘Next Gen’ to make a Grand Slam quarter-final when he did so at the 2017 U.S. Open, which contributed to a career-high ranking of No. 31 in the early stages of 2018, but unfortunately the 21-year-old has been struck down by injuries ever since - firstly suffering from stress fractures in his lower back last year, which caused him to miss several months, while he was also sidelined for six weeks this year with a wrist injury. Rublev, who won his first ATP title as a lucky loser in Umag in 2017, dropped out of the top 100 briefly this season as a result, but he managed to get back inside the top 50 (again briefly) last month when he scored his first top five win over Dominic Thiem to make his maiden ATP 500 final in Hamburg, losing to Nikoloz Basilashvili.

Unfortunately, Rublev was back out of the top 50 and down to a current ranking of No. 70 the following week as he failed to defend semi-final points in Washington and lost in Canada Masters qualifying, but he’s put together a great week in Cincinnati so far, qualifying for the main draw and then avenging his Hamburg loss to Basilashvili, before registering an impressive 6-4 6-4 win over three-time major champion Stan Wawrinka to reach the Round of 16 and set up a clash with Federer for the first time.

"I always wanted to meet him," Rublev said of playing Federer. "Finally, we meet and we'll see tomorrow. I will do my best. I will fight until the end."

Federer is obviously favourite, but this will be a good test for the seven-time champion. Rublev is showing signs of getting back to his best, and if he can execute his rapid-fire forehand, he does have weapons to do some damage on Thursday. But after watching Federer breeze through his opening match, it’s looking like it will take a big performance to beat him on these fast hardcourts - and it’s unlikely Rublev has it in him right now.


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Federer vs Rublev ATP Cincinnati live streaming, preview and tips - Federer and Rublev clash for the first time in R16

Roger Federer continues his bid for a record-extending eighth Cincinnati Masters title when he takes on rising star Andrey Rublev for the first time in the Round of 16 on Thursday.

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