It’s as if the stars have aligned and the universe wants to see Roger Federer take on Rafael Nadal in a Grand Slam final one more time. The pair have one of the greatest tennis rivalries in history and i’m sure everyone would like to see them compete against each other in a fairytale final. Stan Wawrinka and Grigor Dimitrov are the only two players who stand in their way.
Roger Federer V Stan Wawrinka:
Two fellow countrymen and friends will compete against each other on Thursday night, with the winner proceeding to the Australian Open final. The Wawrinka and Federer bond can be described as the relationship between the master and the apprentice. In the past, Stan would frequently ask for Rogers advice on how to play certain opponents and successfully execute them. As time progressed Wawrinka stopped asking Roger for tips and formed his own knowledge which helped him develop into a Grand Slam title winner.
The pair have faced off against each other on 21 occasions, with Federer dominating, winning 18 of the 21 contests. Federer also boasts a more impressive record on hard courts, having won 13/13 matches and 28 out of 32 sets. The most important asset to a player is experience, especially towards the back end of a tournament. No player has as much experience at Grand Slam level as the 35 year old. I’d expect Roger to once again get himself over the line.
Rafael Nadal V Grigor Dimitrov:
Nadal has struggled with injuries in the past few years and it is excellent to see him progressing towards the end of major Grand Slams once again. The spaniard has a lethal left handed forehand that can hit the lines with great accuracy. Dimitrov’s ground stroking in this years Australian Open has been magnificent, boasting one of the fastest ground stroke speeds in the tournament.
Nadal and Dimitrov have played each other on eight occasions, with Rafa winning 7 of them. Dimitrov, 26 years of age has struggled to compete against the top tier players such as Federer, Nadal, Murray and Djokovic. It would be a difficult task for the Bulgarian to eliminate a raging Rafael Nadal. In the other Semi Final i placed emphasis on Roger’s experience and how valuable it is, especially in the final stages of a Grand Slam. Rafa has plenty of experience over Dimitrov and i’m confident he can get the better of him once again.