It’s Friday and the MercedesCup is in full swing: eight players are still contending for this year’s title and all of those players will see action in the quarter finals.
It all starts at 11 am with Denis Istomin (UZB) against no. 2 seeded title holder Lucas Pouille from France. The man from Uzbekistan has battled his way into the quarters by beating Philipp Kohlschreiber in the first and Florian Mayer in the second round. Pouille enjoyed a bye in the first round and then quickly dispatched German youngster Rudolf Molleker in the second round.
At around 1 pm the fans are treated to a duel of two seeded players: Milos Raonic (CAN/7) will face off against Tomas Berdych (CZE/3).
The highlight of the day will not start before 3 pm: superstar Roger Federer (SUI/1) takes on Guido Pella from Argentina and has a wish from after his second round match fulfilled. After a hard fought for win against Mischa Zverev, Federer bemoaned the lack of rhythm he was given by a pure serve and volley player, wishing for a base line player in the quarter finals – a definition which Pella certainly fits.
The last match of the day has yet two more seeded players: Nick Kyrgios (AUS/4) and Feliciano Lopez (ESP/8). Just like Federer, Kyrgios was missing from the ATP tour for months, but not because he took some time off voluntarily but rather because his injured right elbow forced him to. Nevertheless, he celebrated a comeback victory against rising German youngster Maximilian Marterer in three sets. “To be honest, I really played awful today”, he said later, “but I was lucky that my service didn’t fail me and kept me in the match.” As with Federer, his form should get better with each set played.