Coric stuns Federer again in Shanghai Masters semis

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Switzerland's Roger Federer hits a return during the men's singles semifinal match against Borna Coric of Croatia at 2018 ATP Shanghai Masters tennis tournament in Shanghai, east China, Oct. 13, 2018. Federer lost 0-2. (Xinhua/Fan Jun)

Defending champion Roger Federer crashed out of the ongoing ATP Shanghai Masters on Saturday after a 6-4, 6-4 straight sets loss to Borna Coric, who will face Novak Djokovoic in the final.

Coric, who is now ranked 19th, earned breaks in the opening games of both sets and held out all his services games to see off the Swiss master in 73 minutes.

"I thought he was better, he had more chances than I had. I got off to a bad start in both sets," Federer spoke highly of the 21-year-old Croatian.

The 37-year-old also emphasized that this is not his last time playing Shanghai Masters. "I definitely plan to come back next year," he added.

After the victory over the top seed, Coric enters into his first Masters 1000 final, which will also improve his ranking to the career high No. 15 next week.

"It will be really ungrateful that I say that I was waiting for a very long time," Coric said. "And it happened much earlier than what I expected."

Awaiting Coric in the final is second seed Djokovoic after the three-time Shanghai Masters winner powered past fourth seeded Alexander Zverev of Germany 6-2, 6-1 earlier in the day.

The 31-year-old Serbian, who has not lost a match since Toronto in August, broke four times of six offerings and never gave his opponent any breaking opportunity in this lop-sided hour-long match.

"He is probably the best player in the world right now. I didn't lose to anyone that bad," said Zverev, who committed 24 unforced errors.

The triumph also helps Djokovoic surpass Federer to become world No. 2. "Obviously I work hard for it. And my ultimate goal is to get to No. 1 by the end of the year. I'm in a good way," the 14-time Grand Slam champion said.

Previewing the final, Djokovoic said: "We cannot underestimate Borna. He is the one of the hardest-working guys on the tour. He has played some great tennis so far this week."

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