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Roger Federer vs Guido Pella ATP Stuttgart Preview, Predictions and Live Stream: Federer continues comeback with quarter final against Pella

Leye Aduloju in ATP Tour 15 Jun 2018
  • Roger Federer vs Guido Pella is live from Stuttgart on Friday, 15 June from 3:00pm local time/ 2:00pm BST
  • Federer won their only previous meeting at Wimbledon 2016
Roger Federer. (Photo by Wilson Sporting Goods)

After making a successful return to the sport with his victory over Mischa Zverev in his Mercedes Cup opener, Roger Federer seeks a semi-final berth at the tournament when he takes on Argentine left-hander, Guido Pella on Friday.

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Having not played for three months following his decision to skip the clay-court season. Federer showed understandable signs of rust against Zverev, dropping the opening set before recovering to win in three. The Swiss had early chances, missing two break points in the opening game of the match, and another two at 2-2, and he was made to pay for his inability to convert when Zverev broke to love to lead 5-3. The German, who had previously never taken a set off Federer in five previous meetings, finished strongly, winning the last nine points to close out the opening set.

Both men exchanged breaks midway through the second set, but it was Federer who found the breakthrough at the death, breaking to love in the tenth game to force a decider. By then, the great Swiss had begun to come to terms with Zverev’s lefty serve-and-volley game, and two more breaks in the final set helped him to a 3-6 6-4 6-2 victory after an hour and 35 minutes.

 “It was difficult, missed some chances maybe in the first set... He connected well at the right times”.

“And then I found a way, I found my rhythm... I'm very happy with how I played. I'm super happy to be back on Tour. It's been a great start.”

“It feels good to win again. I've lost my last two matches,” said Federer. “It's nice to get a fresh start here.”

Federer won his first seventeen matches of the year, his best ever start to a season, but that unbeaten run was ended by Juan Martin del Potro at the Indian Wells final. The Swiss then suffered a shock loss to Thanasi Kokkinakis in the opening round in Miami, before going on a three-month break- skipping the clay-court season for the second straight year. Like 2017, he returned to the tour in Stuttgart, but unlike 2017, when he lost his comeback match to Tommy Haas, he has made a winning return this year and will be keen to build on that. 

The Swiss needs to reach the final to regain the No. 1 ranking from Nadal, and while that remains a target, what’s surely most important for now is that he gets enough matches to completely shake off that rust as he bids for another glorious grass court season. Next on the agenda is a Stuttgart quarter final against Argentine left-hander, Guido Pella.

Not exactly renowned for his grass-court exploits, Pella has produced two very good results this week, beating Australian, John Millman 6-2 6-2 in the opening round, before taking down India’s Prajnesh Gunneswaran to book his quarter final berth.

Guido Pella. (Photo by Zhong Zhi/Getty Images)
Pella is looking to reach his second ATP World Tour semi-final of the season, after making the last four in his first tournament of the year in Doha. He has since lost three more quarter finals- on the clay courts of Buenos Aires, Houston and Geneva. Outside that Doha semi-final, he actually hadn’t won a match away from clay (before Stuttgart), falling in the opening rounds at the Australian Open, Indian Wells and Miami. The 28-year-old also failed to cross the first round at clay-court meets in Rio, Monte Carlo and Munich, while he went one round better in Sao Paolo, Barcelona and Roland Garros, where he was beaten by Rafael Nadal.

Pella arrived Stuttgart having never won a tour-level main draw match on grass, but he opened his tournament with a competent win over Millman, wrapped up in just over an hour, before defeating India’s Gunneswaran, who had taken out Denis Shapovalov in his own tournament opener, in the second round. Serving at a healthy 70%, and winning 67% of points on his second serves, Pella faced, and saved only two break points throughout the match, both in the third game of second set. Pella took a tight opening set on a tie break, and after failing to convert four break points through the course of the match, he finally made the breakthrough at 4-3 before serving out the match confidently to record back-to-back wins on grass.

Can the world number 79 continue his grass-court purple patch when he takes on Federer on Friday?

Their only previous meeting was at Wimbledon in 2016, and interestingly, Pella competed quite well, taking the Swiss to two tie-breaks before falling 7-6 7-6 6-3. The Argentine possesses weapons to trouble Federer- his forehand in particular, but Federer has a whole lot more in his arsenal on this surface. Having got his eye in with that victory over Zverev, the Swiss, with his swift attacking style, should have too much in the tank for Pella on Friday.

Roger Federer vs Guido Pella is live from Stuttgart on Friday, 15 June from 3:00pm local time/ 2:00pm BST

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Roger Federer vs Guido Pella ATP Stuttgart Preview, Predictions and Live Stream: Federer continues comeback with quarter final against Pella

Roger Federer takes on Guido Pella in the quarter finals in Stuttgart on Friday. Will Federer continue his successful return to the sport? Read our preview, predictions and stream the match live online.

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