Roger Federer
Federer faces Johnson ahead of a possible quarter-final against Nadal Reuters

Ninth seed Roger Federer takes on 24th seed Steve Johnson in the Men's singles third round of 2017 BNP Paribas Open at Indian Wells on Tuesday.

The 18-time Grand Slam champion decimated his second-round opponent Stephane Robert 6-2, 6-1 on Sunday to make a solid start to his campaign. On the other hand, Johnson edged past South Africa's Kevin Anderson in three sets - 6-5, 3-6, 7-6 (4) to make the progress in the tournament.

Federer, who maintained that he is up for the challenge at Indian Wells despite being drawn in the "Group of Death" is expected to face Rafael Nadal, who will be taking on compatriot Fernando Verdasco later today, in the quarter-final. However, he is up for a tricky test against Johnson, who is known for his strong returns.

Notably, Federer was dumped out of Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships in the second match of the tournament right after his Australian Open triumph and the Swiss, who was brilliant with his second serves on Sunday, will be determined to get past the hurdle today. Johnson, on the other hand, started the year on a bad not losing the Brisbane opening round to Grigor Dimitrov.

A second round exit followed the world number 27 in Melbourne but the American has been consistent since then reaching the quarter-final of three tournaments - Memphis, Delray Beach and Acapulco. However, it will be a stern test for the 27-year-old later today against Federer, against whom he lost last year's Wimbledon Round of 16.

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