Dubai Tennis: Roger Federer confident best still to come as he bids for 100th ATP title

The No 2 seed believes he is improving as the tournament at Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium goes along

Roger Federer of Switzerland reacts against Marton Fucsovics of Hungry during their match at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Thursday, Feb. 28, 2019. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili)
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Roger Federer is confident his best is still to come at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships as he prepares for Friday's semi-final with Borna Coric.

The seven-time champion has not convinced on his run to the last four, dropping a set to Philipp Kohlschreiber and Fernando Verdasco in the first two rounds, before he was pushed hard by Marton Fucsovics in the quarter-finals on Thursday, saving two set points in the first set before prevailing 7-6, 6-4.

As well as winning an eighth Dubai crown the other incentive for the 37 year old is that winning the competition will give him the 100th ATP tournament title of his career.

Of his current form, the 20-time major winner said after his win over Fucsovics: "I believe I've gotten better as the tournament went on. But I think that's always a logical thing to happen.

"It's very rare that you come out and play a horrible match in the quarters or in the semis of a tournament because you've achieved a certain level and a sort of standard of play.

"I think as the tournament goes deeper, you get used to the ball conditions, the flight of the ball, your serve patterns, being able to hit the corners and the spots better, more frequently. It makes you play better."

Federer lost twice to Coric in 2018 and speaking before the Croatian defeated Nikoloz Basilashvili he said he expected another difficult encounter.

"We've had a couple tough matches as of late," he said. "He beat me on a few of those occasions. I think we're 2-2 in the last four maybe. From that standpoint, I know I have my work cut out."

Federer's match with Coric is due to start around 7pm, with the first semi-final between Stefanos Tsitsipas and Gael Monfils beginning at 5pm.