Federer: 'Stars are aligned' to win ninth Wimbledon title

Carrie Guzman
July 13, 2019

Since 2017, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic have dominated the Grand Slams.

Eight-time Wimbledon champion Roger Federer believes the "stars have aligned" as he attempts to become the oldest Grand Slam victor of modern times in Sunday's final against Novak Djokovic.

Twitter was overawed by the level of play both the veterans produced on Friday and could not stop gushing over Federer's ability to push the limits at the All England Club. Nadal has two, and beat Federer in the 2008 final.

"Regardless of who's across the net or what is happening around me, I'll definitely give it my all".

The second was a different story as Bautista Agut dialled back a little and found that he was able to out-duel the master.

The Spaniard's form had led American great John McEnroe to declare: "You play against a guy like Nadal, he wants to tear your heart out".

Friday's match turned on an incredible 45-shot rally in the seventh game of the third set, which Djokovic won to hold serve and stay a break up.

The Serbian battled past Roberto Bautista Agut 6-2, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 as he chases back-to-back Wimbledon successes for the second time in his career.

With the victory, Djokovic has reached his 25th Grand Slam final. "There were some tight ones and long rallies", Federer said. However, a six-Slam gap sounds far more daunting than four.

On Friday, Federer beat Nadal in four sets.

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Asked where it would rate among his displays in south-west London, Federer said: "Obviously extremely high".

For some reason, he has never quite captured the hearts of the Centre Court crowd in the same way as Federer, Murray or Rafael Nadal, but insists that will not affect his focus. Federer rattled off a pair of stinging first serves to reach 6-3, then claiming the bracket with a forehand strike.

Though Djokovic regained his composure to make the final and set himself up for a potential 16th triumph at a major, Henman thinks the fact that the support will weigh heavily in favour of Federer tomorrow afternoon could be crucial to the latter's hopes of winning.

"I am sad for the loss because for me it was another opportunity", he said.

"I think at the end of the match I started to play much better, no?" Djokovic won 14 of the next 18 points while pulling out to a 3-0 lead - and he didn't need to produce much magic to do so. He double-faulted on his first set point but converted the second with a volley victor that clipped the net cord.

Overall, Djokovic holds a 9-6 edge in the Slams.

Serbia's Novak Djokovic celebrates defeating Spain's Roberto Bautista Agut during a men's singles semifinal match at Wimbledon. He is the defending champion and has showed why this week. His forehand also became problematic, while Bautista Agut, who had already beaten Djokovic twice this season, couldn't seem to miss a shot.

This was the second major in a row where they've faced off: Nadal won their French Open semifinal last month en route to his 12th championship on the red clay there.

To get to those numbers in Sunday's final, Federer must get past Novak Djokovic, who is the defending champion and seeded No. 1. But the top-seeded Serb saved two break chances in the third set and won easily in the fourth, though he needed five match points in the final game to close it out.

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