Roger Federer
Roger Federer faces Del Potro for the 25th time in his career.Joe Scarnici/Getty Images
  • The men's singles final between Federer and Del Potro will not start before 1pm local time, 1:30am IST (Monday), 8pm GMT.
  • Federer eyes his 28th ATP Masters 1000 title in Indian Wells.
  • The two players are meeting for the 25th time in their careers. 

Defending champion Roger Federer takes on sixth seed Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina in the men's singles final of BNP Paribas Open 2018 on Sunday, March 18.

The world no. 1 survived a scare against Croatia's Borna Coric in the semi-final, coming back from being a set down to clinch a 5-7, 6-4, 6-4 win.

Federer seemed uncomfortable with the excessive wind at Indian Wells as he was broken numerous times by Coric. The 36-year-old was stretched to the limits in the 140-minute-long battle Saturday.

The 20-time Grand Slam champion starts the semi-final as favorite, given his 17-match unbeaten run in 2018.Also, he has beaten Del Potro 18 times in their 24 meetings so far.

In the absence of challenges from injury-nursing Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray and Stanislas Wawrinka, the reigning Australian Open champion has managed to breeze past his opponents in the new season but will face a stern test Sunday.

Del Potro lost three of his four meetings against Federer in 2017 but a big win came at the US Open quarter-final.

Can Del Potro win maiden Masters 1000 title?

Juan Martin del Potro
Juan Martin Del Potro demolished Milos Raonic in the semi-final Saturday.Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

The 29-year-old Argentina star, who won the ATP Masters 500 tournament in Acapulco earlier this month, looked comfortable, unlike the Swiss legend, while managing a convincing win over Milos Raonic in the semi-final Saturday.

Del Potro has stitched a nine-match unbeaten run and should be high on confidence as he returned to the top-10 of ATP rankings for the first time in five years in January 2018.

With a powerful forehand, Del Potro will be looking to cause trouble to Federer but his shaky backhand might be a cause for concern.

"He [Federer] is the favorite to win tomorrow, but I will try to do my best tennis. I beat him in the past, and I know [what] I can do to repeat that but is not easy. It will be a good challenge to see how my level is against him," Del Potro said on the eve of the big final.

Live stream and TV listings

India: TV - Sony ESPN/HD; Live stream: Sony Liv

Argentina: TV - ESPN; Live stream: Watch ESPN

Canada: RDS

UK: TV- Sky Sports; Live stream: Sky Go

US: Tennis Channel