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By Akshay Kohli
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Ferrer is chasing his 15th career title and he has a stellar 24-4 win-loss record for the season so far. Ferrer also became the first contender on tour to win three titles this season. He triumphed in Auckland, Buenos Aires and Acapulco. Last season, Ferrer reached the final in Barcelona and fell to Rafael Nadal. The Spaniard is one of those defiant warriors on tour, who have carved a special niche for themselves in this highly competitive world of tennis – with sheer determination and hard-work. He would be aiming to put behind his shocking early round loss at the Monte-Carlo Rolex Masters and doing well here. His previous round victory must have helped him calm a few nerves as he has a lot of points to defend this season on clay.
His opponent is one of the biggest servers on the ATP tour, Lopez is one rare Spaniard with a huge, breath taking serve. Though 2012 has not been his year so far with a win-loss record of 7-9. He is playing his best tennis by far as his ranking says it all- World No.16. His fourth round loss at the Australian Open and his semi-final loss at the US Mens Clay Court Tennis Championships have been the high points of 2012 as he looks to add another good performance to 2012. But he has to play out of his skin to beat one of the favorites here.
The two have played each other 11 times, indicating they know how to play against each other. It is the southpaw Lopez who leads their head-to-head 6-5, but a thing to notice is that they played thrice on clay and all meetings have gone to Ferrer rather easily. Will Lopez extend his lead or will Ferrer even things out? Only time will tell!
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