ATP Finals Flashback: Roger Federer destroys Rafael Nadal in 59 minutes

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ATP Finals Flashback: Roger Federer destroys Rafael Nadal in 59 minutes

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal met in the ATP Finals semi-final for the second straight year in 2007. Roger and Rafa were the players to beat for the third consecutive season, taking all four Majors and standing above Novak Djokovic and all the others.

Leading the Shanghai field, Federer lost the opening match to Fernando Gonzalez before scoring two wins to find himself in the last four. Nadal defeated Richard Gasquet and Novak Djokovic and set the clash against his greatest rival, hoping to avenge Wimbledon's heartbreaking loss.

Instead, Roger outplayed him completely and earned a commanding 6-4, 6-1 victory in 59 minutes to advance into the fifth straight ATP Finals title match. It was Roger's sixth victory over Rafa and the third in the previous four encounters.

The Swiss fired 11 aces and dropped 11 points in nine service games. Nadal wasted the only break chance and suffered three breaks to stay empty-handed against the Swiss for the second time at this event. Federer had 24 winners and 16 unforced errors, forcing around 20 mistakes from Rafa while staying on eight.

Dominating with his initial shot and a groundstroke, Federer forged a massive advantage in the shortest range up to four strokes. He stayed in touch with Nadal in the more extended exchanges to sail into the title match. Roger blasted an ace in the encounter's opening game for a hold at 15, followed by Nadal's ace in game two for 1-1.

The Swiss placed another unreturned serve down the T line in game three to move in front, looking sharp behind the initial shot.

Roger Federer defeated Rafael Nadal at the 2007 ATP Finals.

Rafa secured the fourth game with a perfect forehand winner and took the opening two points on the return in the next one.

Roger stayed calm and fired four powerful serves to get out of jail and move 3-2 ahead. The Spaniard clinched the sixth game with a volley winner and leveled the score at 3-3 in under 20 minutes. The first break chance came in game seven.

Federer saved it with a forced mistake to keep the serve intact and landed two winners at deuce to open a 4-3 gap. Nadal hit a service winner to stay on the positive side, playing on level terms with Roger so far but losing ground in the rest of the clash.

Federer held from 30-15 down in game nine and fired a forehand down the line winner at 5-4 to grab a break and close the opening set. Fading from the court, Rafa got broken at love in the second set's game two and allowed Roger to race toward a 3-0 lead with a quick hold.

The Spaniard hit a double fault in game four to drop the sixth straight game before the Swiss moved 5-0 up and a game away from the triumph. Rafa held at love in game six to avoid a bagel, and Roger sealed the deal with a hold at 30 a few minutes later to advance into his fifth ATP Finals title match in a row.