Tsonga knocks out Federer in French quarters

Published June 04, 2013

| Sports Network

Tuesday's marquee men's quarterfinal saw French favorite Jo-Wilfried Tsonga oust Swiss great Roger Federer in straight sets at Roland Garros.

Another Day-10 quarterfinal saw David Ferrer dismantle fellow Spaniard Tommy Robredo, as Ferrer will meet Tsonga in Friday's semifinals on the famed red clay in Paris.

The sixth-seeded Tsonga secured a berth in his first-ever French Open semifinal by beating a listless second-seeded Federer 7-5, 6-3, 6-3 in 1 hour, 51 minutes on Court Chatrier. Tsonga broke Federer six times, while the Swiss legend settled for only two breaks in defeat.

"This is obviously a crushing loss," Federer said. "I struggled a little bit everywhere. Personally, I'm pretty sad about the match and the way I played.

"Jo-Willy played great today. He was better than me in all areas today. He returned better than I did, served better than I did. I struggled to find my rhythm.

"I'm just disappointed I couldn't put in a better match today."

Tsonga broke Federer for a 4-3 lead in the third set on a backhand shot that caromed off the rattled Swiss icon, who missed overheads and easy volleys and failed to produce even one ace on Day 10.

The determined Tsonga converted on his second match point when Federer misfired long on one final backhand, the Swiss' 34th unforced error of the bout.

"The strategy for me today was to be solid and make him (Federer) work," an elated Tsonga said during an on-court interview.

The former Australian Open runner-up Tsonga is now 4-9 against the reigning Wimbledon champion Federer, who topped the Frenchman in the Australian Open quarters in January. Tsonga beat Federer in a Wimbledon quarterfinal two years ago.

The former world No. 1 and 17-time Grand Slam champion Federer, who last lost in the French quarters in 2010, captured his lone French Open title in 2009 and is a four-time runner-up here to Rafael Nadal.

Federer lost before the semifinals for the second time in the last three major events.

He has yet to title anywhere in 2013, his longest drought to start a year since 2000.

Tsonga will appear in his fifth career Grand Slam semifinal (1-3) and is the first men's French Open semifinalist since Gael Monfils in 2008. He's also trying to become the first men's French Open finalist since Henri Leconte in 1988 and first champion since Yannick Noah in 1983.

Meanwhile, a fourth-seeded Ferrer sent a 32nd-seeded Robredo packing 6-2, 6-1, 6-1 in a mere 1 hour, 25 minutes on Court Lenglen. Ferrer reached his second straight French Open semi by breaking Robredo seven times, while Robredo had only one break-point chance on Tuesday, and lost it.

A weary 31-year-old Robredo won his previous three matches, all in five sets, after trailing each one two-sets-to-love.

Ferrer, who has yet to drop at set at this particular Parisian fortnight, is now 7-2 lifetime versus Robredo, as the two compatriots met for the first time at a major event.

The 31-year-old Ferrer will now appear in his sixth career Grand Slam semifinal, seeking his first win.

Ferrer will meet Tsonga for a fourth time on the ATP Tour, with the Spaniard leading their lifetime series 2-1. The Frenchman, however, won their lone Grand Slam meeting in the fourth round at Wimbledon in 2011.

Wednesday's quarterfinals will pit current world No. 1 Novak Djokovic against 12th-seeded resurgent German Tommy Haas and the third-seeded former top-ranked great Nadal versus ninth-seeded Swiss Stan Wawrinka.

Nadal beat Djokovic in last year's French Open final to secure a third straight and men's-record seventh overall Roland Garros title.

The reigning Aussie Open champion Djokovic needs a French Open title to complete a career Grand Slam, like his contemporaries Federer and Nadal have already accomplished.

URL

http://www.foxnews.com/sports/2013/06/04/tsonga-knocks-out-federer-in-french-quarters/