Match Stats/Report - Federer vs A. Zverev, Halle final, 2017


Hall of Fame
Roger Federer beat Alexander Zverev 6-1, 6-3 in the Halle final, 2017 on grass

It was Federer's 9th title at the event and he would follow up by winning Wimbledon for a record breaking 8th time shortly after. Zverev had beaten Federer in the semi finals the previous year and would go onto beat him in the Canadian Open final soon after. Federer would finish the year ranked 2, Zverev 3

Federer won 58 points, Zverev 33

Serve Stats
- 1st serve percentage (28/42) 67%
- 1st serve points won (26/28) 93%
- 2nd serve points won (7/14) 50%
- Aces 4 (1 not clean), Service Winners 2
- Unreturned Serve Percentage (19/42) 45%

- 1st serve percentage (36/49) 73%
- 1st serve points won (19/36) 53%
- 2nd serve points won (5/13) 38%
- Aces 5
- Unreturned Serve Percentage (14/49) 29%

Serve Pattern
Federer served...
- to FH 57%
- to BH 43%

Zverev served...
- to FH 35%
- to BH 53%
- to Body 12%

Return Stats
Federer made...
- 35 (11 FH, 24 BH), including 1 runaround FH & 1 return-approach
- 9 Errors, comprising...
- 3 Unforced (2 FH, 1 BH)
- 6 Forced (3 FH, 3 BH)
- Return Rate (35/49) 71%

Zverev made...
- 23 (13 FH, 10 BH)
- 13 Errors, comprising...
- 3 Unforced (2 FH, 1 BH)
- 10 Forced (6 FH, 4 BH)
- Return Rate (23/42) 55%

Break Points
Federer 4/8 (5 games)
Zverev 0/1

Winners (including returns, excluding aces)
Federer 17 (7 FH, 2 BH, 3 FHV, 2 BHV, 3 OH)
Zverev 7 (5 FH, 1 BH, 1 FHV)

Federer's FHs - 3 inside-out (2 passes), 1 inside-in, 1 longline and 2 drop shots
- BHs - 2 drop shots

- 4 from serve-volley points -
- 1 first volley (1 BHV)
- 3 second volleys (2 FHV, 1 BHV)

- 1 from a return-approach point - an OH

- 1 other OH was on the bounce

Zverev's FHs - 2 cc, 1 dtl and 2 inside-out
- BHs - 1 dtl pass

Errors (excluding returns and serves)
Federer 12
- 12 Unforced (5 FH, 4 BH, 2 FHV, 1 BHV)
Unforced Error Forcefulness Index 50

Zverev 22
- 15 Unforced (8 FH, 4 BH, 2 FHV, 1 BHV)
- 7 Forced (3 FH, 2 BH, 1 FHV, 1 Net-Touch)
Unforced Error Forcefulness Index 53.3

(Note 1: all half-volleys refer to such shots played at net. Half -volleys played from other parts of the court are included within relevant groundstroke counts)

(Note 2: The 'Unforced Error Forcefulness Index is a measure of how aggressive of intent the average UE made was. 60 is maximum, 20 is minimum. This match has been scored using a four point scale - 2 defensive, 4 neutral, 5 attacking, 6 winner attempt)

Net Points & Serve-Volley
Federer was...
- 16/20 (80%) at net, including...
- 8/10 (80%) serve-volleying, comprising...
- 6/6 (100%) off 1st serve and...
- 2/4 (50%) off 2nd serve
- 1/1 return-approaching

Zverev was...
- 3/12 (25%) at net, including...
- 1/4 (25%) serve-volleying, all 1st serves
- 1/2 forced back/retreated

Match Report
Strong from Federer, in a way different from his usual, and poor from Zverev who can't keep ball in play, on a fast grass court. Conditions appear significantly quicker than typical second week Wimbledon

Serve & Return
Fed is utterly dominant on serve, and bangs down 45% unreturned while winning 93% first serve points. Its very challenging stuff to cope with. All first serves are forceful, many very much so and large chunk of his seconds are too

Just 4 aces - Zverev has 5, having served 8 more first serves - and Zverev still managing to 3 return UEs - is suggesting that the serving isn't outright unreturnable, but its very challenging stuff. Not much discredit to Zverev for doing so. He does return firmly when Fed serve-volleys, leaving the winner above average of force regulation first volleys

Zverev seeing just 1 break point isn't too unusual on grass over 2 short sets. His not being able to find a way into Fed's service games isn't why he loses.... against this calibre serving on such a court, one just hangs in and waits for chances - a double fault or two, a game with lots of second serves, a fortune return, the server missing routine balls etc. - there's really no way to regularly create counter-play

Zverev serves at 73%, which is 6% higher than Fed and his serve is even more powerful. They key difference is in placement - Fed hits lines and drags Zverev wide, Zverev serves in Fed's swing zone

Still takes some doing to return regularly and Fed does a good job blocking and chipping returns in play. 71% return rate against a big, if not accurate server, is good from Fed. Zverev making a hash in play accounts for the very low 53% first serve points won... Fed's returns tend to leave him in control of point on third ball

Play - Baseline, Net & Serve-Volley
Not just standout but downright unique stats coming out of this match is 0 forced errors from Federer. I've never seen that

Fed's defence is nondescript, or to be more accurate, almost completely untested... all discredit to Zverev here

On the UE front, players are near even (Fed 12, Zverev 15)... Fed would shoot ahead on winner front alone (17-7 lead), but with lead in forcing errors (7-0), does so doubly

Where does Zverev err? In first set, he makes 8 third ball UEs. He only served 26 points and 5 weren't returned... he misses regulation third ball 8/21 times (also forced into an error by a strong wide return). Just regular, Fed blocked back returns with Zverev free to start the point anyway he can see fit... and he keeps missing. FHs, BHs, attacking shots, neutral shots, winner attempts... nothing is exempt. Mostly attacking shots. Terrible stuff

Fed plays a different game from his usual. He doesn't look to dominate with FHs, slices BHs more often than not (including deliberately short and/or drop shots) and looks to come forward to finish points

he seems to play as to avoid going toe to toe with the more powerful Zverev off the ground... a sound plan

Zverev actually leads in power baseline-to-baseline winners 5 to 3 (from both players, some of these are from well up in court, nearer service line than baseline). Even including passes, Zverev leads 6 to 5

Its the drop shotting that takes the eye. 4 of Fed's 9 baseline winners are drop shots... have you ever seen that from him? Varied and difficult shots too... couple are played from well behind baseline and others are played from regulation positions. He misses a couple of ambitious ones, but the ones he makes and wins points with - would qualify as highly ambitious, almost ridiculous shot choices. And he keeps winning points with it. Sublime

Fed eases his way into coming to net. his first couple trips being second serve-volley points. In second set, he's up much more - all 6 of his first serve-volleys come in the set. Above average of power returning from Zverev greets him at net. After missing a couple of volleys early, Fed's able to keep volleys in play. His first volley tends not to kill points and is volleyed away from Zverev, short of into corners

In second set, Zverev takes to coming to net. He's harried and doesn't look like he knows what he's doing up there, like a quintessential clueless net player. Couple of good passes from Fed, but mostly Zverev poor up there is behind the very low 25% points. His volleys are of the plonk-ball-in-court-anyway-you-can sort

Differences in footwork are vast. Fed's are his typical - light, easy steps and flawless (not particularly quick). Zverev's are heavy and intense, like a grass court tyro

Match Progression
Fed's out of the gate in a flash, breaking to love. 2nd point, he eases a BH drop shot winner short line from regulation position. Next point, a wide BH inside-in return forces an error. Point after, a whacking FH inside-in winner from regulation position, with Zverev on that side of the court

In his first service game, Fed serve-volleys twice behind second serves. On the first, makes a delicate angled BH1/2V first up and FHVs the winner to Zverev's rejoinder

Rest of set is more mundane - unreturned serves and sure block returning from Fed and Zverev making a hash of third balls. Still a couple of beautiful points/shots from the winner - on one, he drop shots Zverev in while approaching himself, lob volleys Zverev back and puts away a not too easy volley off Zverev's tweener retrieval. And another BH drop shot winner from well behind the baseline in last game of set

Zverev has his only break point in opening game of second set, which is erased by a strong serve

Another noteworthy drop shot play from Fed ends with Zverev slipping dangerously as he runs down the ball and going on to hit the net. Fed offers a sympathetic, almost apologetic pat on the back

Break comes in game 6 and is decorate with another Fed drop shot winner and ends with Fed drawing Zverev to net before passing him FH inside-out. The point before, Zverev's unable to putaway an OH and ends up forced into error at net

For rest of match, Fed adds another delicate drop shot winner, this time, FH inside-out. He serves it out with 3 volleying winners off serve-volley points

Summing up, good showing from Fed - strong serving, sure returning, attacking net play and sublime, varied drop shotting. His serve thwarted, Zverev makes a meal of regulation balls and is found wanting at net

Stats for '13 quarter between Federer and Mischa Zverev -
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