Federer makes light of day shift to ease into last eight

January 22, 2018

By Martyn Herman

MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Roger Federer was a strictly nocturnal beast throughout the first week of the Australian Open but proved just as effective with the sun on his back as he sauntered into the quarter-finals for the 14th time on Monday.

The defending champion did not require his dazzling best against 80th-ranked Hungarian Marton Fucsovics in his first match scheduled during the day session but still emerged a comfortable 6-4 7-6(3) 6-2 winner.

After his earlier-than-usual finish, the 36-year-old world number two said he might even be able to make the most of a night off and take his wife Mirka out for dinner.

“I was considering sunglasses and a towel for the beach but, no, the only thing is the racket strings are a bit tighter but it’s not crazy hot today,” Federer told former champion Jim Courier in a knockabout post-match chat on court.

“It’s a different rhythm playing in the day and not going to bed at 3 a.m. We might go out for dinner tonight but Mirka has left already — she must have other plans!”

Federer’s light mood matched the sunny conditions and he was even reduced to giggles during one point late in the second set when he miss-hit a forehand high into the air, then defended three consecutive Fucsovics smashes to win a bizarre rally.

“This one was the biggest joke of a point maybe I have ever played,” he said later. “Thankfully it didn’t decide the outcome of that second set. That would have been too much of a joke, to be honest.”

Federer is yet to drop a set and did not even face a break point against the 25-year-old Fucsovics, who arrived in Melbourne without a grand slam main draw victory to his name.

Yet his unheralded opponent, bidding to become only the third Hungarian man to reach a grand slam quarter-final in the professional era, offered an all-round display that belied his record, even if it did not surprise Federer.

“I practiced with him for a few days in a row in Switzerland. That helped, you know, knowing his strength and weaknesses a little bit,” he said.

“He was not completely the unknown opponent that maybe people thought he was.

“He hung with me for a long time. So it was a good match.”

Federer was in cruise control in the first set but struck decisively when Fucsovics served at 4-5, squeezing the throttle enough to earn a set point converted with a smash.

Fucsovics kept Federer honest in the second set and played his part in some entertaining rallies to extend the 19-times grand slam champion to a tiebreak.

Federer rifled a running forehand pass to earn three set points and again finished the set at the net, with a smash.

The third set was all over in 31 minutes as Federer raced into the 52nd grand slam quarter-final of his career, booking a last eight encounter against 19th seeded Czech Tomas Berdych.

(Reporting by Martyn Herman; Editing by Peter Rutherford/John O’Brien)

Powered by WPeMatico

Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed

  • RIFLE THROUGH THE FILES

    Generic selectors
    Exact matches only
    Search in title
    Search in content
    Search in posts
    Search in pages
    Filter by Categories
    AMERICAN THINKER FILE
    BREITBART FILE
    CAR AND DRIVER FILE
    CNET FILE
    DRUDGE REPORT FILE
    ENTREPRENEUR FILE
    FANDANGO MOVIE FILE
    FARMER’S ALMANAC FILE
    FOX NEWS FILE
    FREE BEACON
    FRONT PAGE MAG FILE
    INFOWARS FILE
    LILES FILES
    NEWSBUSTERS FILE
    NY POST FILE
    ONE AMERICA FILE
    PJ MEDIA FILE
    REAL CLEAR WORLD FILE
    REASON FILE
    REUTERS FILE
    ROBB REPORT FILE
    TOWN HALL FILE
    USA TODAY FILE
    WIRED FILE
    WND FILE
    ZERO HEDGE FILE