After around 60 tournaments in about 30 countries, the finest eight of the tennis world battle out the Barclays ATP Tour finals in London. The top eight are divided into two groups – Stan Smith and Ilie Nastase. The group names instead of Group A and Group B are added as a way of recognising and paying tribute to players who have done exceptionally well in the past. Novak Djokovic, Roger Federer, Tomáš Berdych and Kei Nishikori are put in Group Stan while Andy Murray, Stan Wawrinka, Rafael Nadal and David Ferrer are put in Group Ilie.
World number one, Djokovic comes to London with a bag full of wins. With victories in Paris, Beijing, Shanghai and New York, Djokovic came as a favourite. But he finds himself in a very tough situation in London. He lost to Federer in straight sets and now losing to Berdych would probably mean a ticket back to Serbia.
What an amazing year the 34-year-old Swiss has had. Federer has won six titles this year with 59 wins and 10 losses. He has lost less matches than both Nadal and Murray. Earlier this month, Federer won Basel with a victory of Nadal in the final. And he has done pretty well so far in London too. Federer has won both his matches without losing a single set. In other words, Federer has already qualified for the semis.
World number two, Murray has had a rather tough ride after winning the title at Montreal. An early exit at the US Open followed by back to back losses in the final of Paris and Shanghai to Djokovic have summed up the last couple of months for the Brit. Murray lost to Nadal but a win over Ferrer and the local crowd have kept his dream alive in London.
Wawrinka, the world number four, has won 53 and lost 16 matches this season, winning four titles. He has so far played just one match and lost that one. Ferrer and Murray await him in the coming matches.
No one has been as impressive in London as Nadal. The world number five has won both his group matches so far. He has won 71 per cent of the games he has played, the highest percentage in all eight players. By beating Murray, Nadal won his 60th match of the season and looks like he is on his way to win a couple more.
The tournament is at a very interesting time right now. While the Swiss master has booked a spot in the last four, it’s highly likely that Nadal will join him from group Islie. However, the second spots in both groups are still open.
From Group Stan, it’s likely that Djokovic comes up. Berdych has lost both his matches, which makes it a race only between Nishikori and Djokovic. Nishikori will be playing Federer next and keeping in mind Federer’s current form, the chances of Nishikori look bleak. From group Islie, a lot depends on the Andy versus Wawrinka match. The winner can possibly fill out the second spot and book a place in the semis. Expect the crowd to go absolutely crazy for their boy, Andy.
Whoever wins or loses, it’s been a great week of some amazing tennis and expectations are high for the rest of the tournament too. This year has been an incredible year for tennis fans. The first two tournaments of the year, Brisbane and Chennai, were won by Federer and Wawrinka respectively. It will be interesting to see if one of them manages to win the last tournament of the year too.
This Sunday, it will all be decided. And then the players will get a month off to train and get back home. And in January, they will all be headed to Australia to kick start 2016. But for now, let’s see who wins the last tournament of 2015.
It is going to be an interesting race for sure! May the best man win. And the best man of course depends on who you support.
from The Express Tribune Blog http://blogs.tribune.com.pk/story/30389/federer-nadal-djokovic-or-wawrinka-who-will-bag-the-atp-final/