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Defending champion Roger Federer overcomes Daniil Medvedev in a tricky opener at the Rolex Shanghai Masters.

Federer, Djokovic Headline Thursday Action In Shanghai

Federer to face Bautista Agut, Djokovic to play Cecchinato

The top four seeds will take to Center Court at the Rolex Shanghai Masters on Thursday for third-round matches against familiar foes. No. 1 seed and two-time champion Roger Federer is 7-0 in matches and 16-0 in sets against Roberto Bautista Agut of Spain, including a 6-4, 6-2 victory in the Shanghai third round four years ago. With Federer sidelined in 2016, Bautista Agut advanced to the biggest final of his career in Shanghai by defeating then-World No. 1 Novak Djokovic 6-4, 6-4.

View FedEx ATP Head2Head for the following match-ups at the Rolex Shanghai Masters and vote for the players you think will win!
Federer v Bautista Agut | Djokovic v Cecchinato | Del Potro v Coric | Zverev v de Minaur

Despite dominating Bautista Agut in their seven meetings, Federer says that he won’t be taking the Spaniard lightly.  "I saw he was struggling today against a friend of mine, Mackie [McDonald]. I saw he was down 6-3, 4-2, in trouble, so great fight back for him. I'm sure the end to the match gave him a lot of confidence for tomorrow. That's good for him,” Federer said.

"I have a lot of respect for him. He's just a tough guy. So you have to bring it. Could be similar like today. A lot of long rallies potentially, but maybe because he doesn't serve as big as Medvedev, maybe I can take bigger cuts at the ball earlier. I'm excited playing Roberto. I like his demeanor. He's a great fighter. I like playing against those kind of players."

Djokovic has won 14 straight tour-level matches and 27 of 29 overall since losing to then-No. 72 Marco Cecchinato in the Roland Garros quarter-finals on 5 June. They meet again on Thursday with Djokovic eyeing a return to No. 2 and Cecchinato ranked a career-high No. 21. The playing surface in Shanghai suits the Serbian. Djokovic is 527-99 and Cecchinato is 4-11 lifetime on hard courts. With another upset, Cecchinato would join Hall-of-Famer Marat Safin (2-0) and World No. 38 Nick Kyrgios (2-0) as the only players to post multiple wins and no losses against Djokovic.

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The youngest quarter-finalist in Rolex Shanghai Masters history was a 21-year-old Kei Nishikori in 2011. Alex de Minaur (19), Stefanos Tsitsipas (20) and Alexander Zverev (21) all have a chance to break that record on Thursday. Zverev and de Minaur meet on Center Court with the German leading their rivalry 2-0. Tsitsipas is also 2-0 against his opponent, No. 7 seed Kevin Anderson. No. 3 seed Juan Martin del Potro and No. 13 seed Borna Coric conclude play in a rematch of the US Open on 2 September. Del Potro won 6-4, 6-3, 6-1 en route to his second Grand Slam final.

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