INDIAN WELLS, Calif. — Roger Federer and Tommy Haas are frequent practice partners, dining companions and occasionally even doubles partners. Needless to say, they know each other well. Therefore, if Haas is able pull off a surprise shot on his good friend Federer, you know it’s something special.
In their fourth-round match at the BNP Paribas Open on Wednesday, Federer cruelly yanked his friend all over the court before coming to the net, presumably to finish with a soft forehand volley winner. But the 35-year-old Haas motored back across the court to track it down and struck a forehand cross-court pass that ticked the top of the tape for a winner. All told, Haas covered more than 190 feet in the point and still had enough energy to hop over an on-court obstruction afterward.
“Well, what I like about Tommy is just his intensity he brings to the court,” Federer said after the match. “Every shot he hits, it’s with a purpose, it’s with an idea.”
There were lots of ideas but no win for Haas, who lost 6-4, 6-4 in a very entertaining encounter.
Federer was scheduled to play Kevin Anderson in the quarterfinals on Thursday night.