World No. 3 Roger Federer will meet the Japanese No. 1 Kei Nishikori in the quarterfinals of Paris Masters 2018.
The Swiss, who enjoyed a bye into the second round, was handed another bye when his second-round opponent Milos Raonic withdrew from the tournament. As a result, the 2018 Swiss Indoors Basel champion started his campaign in Paris against the 13th seed Fabio Fognini.
Federer’s performance in that match was absolutely clinical. It took him just one hour and 14 minutes to sail to a comfortable straight-set victory with 6-4, 6-3. He saved four out of five break points while maintaining a first service win rate of 81%.
As for Nishikori, he defeated Adrian Mannarino in his opening round to set up a third-round clash with Kevin Anderson. The South African couldn’t do much to overcome the terrific play by Nishikori. In just the little over an hour, the Japanese won the match with 6-4, 6-4.
Nishikori is still seeking his first singles title of this season. With a win-loss record of 42-18, he has been the runner-up on multiple occasions this year. Most recently, he made it to the final in ATP Vienna and ATP Japan before succumbing respectively to Kevin Anderson and Daniil Medvedev.
Federer, on the other hand, has already won four titles, including the Australian Open and ATP Rotterdam. He is now seeking his 100th singles title of his career.
Considering the head-to-head record between the two giants, Federer leads 6-2 over Nishikori. The Swiss has dominated their last five encounters. Their last meeting was in the quarterfinals of Shanghai Masters, where Federer won 6-4, 7-6(4).
The winner of this match will move on to play the winner of the game between Marin Cilic and Novak Djokovic.
In the top half of the bracket, Dominic Thiem will meet the defending champion Jack Sock in the quarters. The young Austrian leads 2-1 here although, they last met in 2016. Additionally, Thiem has had a comparatively better season than Sock and he has the upper hand as he comes into this match.
The other quarterfinal will be played between the fourth seed Alexander Zverev and the rising Russian Karen Khachanov. The German has won all of their previous encounters and leads 2-0 in the head-to-head tally.