Flushing Meadows, NY – Five-time champion Roger Federer advanced to the fourth round at the U.S. Open on Saturday.
Federer was locked in a tight battle with Cilic, after he dropped the second set and then found himself knotted at 4-4 in the third. But the Swiss stalwart broke the tall Croat for a 5-4 edge and then consolidated the break with a set-winning hold. He would cruise the rest of the way in a match that ended when Cilic netted a backhand return after 2 hours, 40 minutes of tennis.
Cilic tallied 44 unforced errors and had his serve broken five times by one of the all-time greats.
The 30-year-old Federer titled here five straight years from 2004-08 and was the 2009 runner-up to Juan Martin del Potro. He owns a men's record 16 Grand Slam titles and was this year's French Open runner-up to Rafael Nadal.
Former Wimbledon runner-up Tomas Berdych came up a third-round loser on Day 6. Gritty Serb Janko Tipsarevic, seeded 20th, was leading the ninth-seeded Berdych 6-4, 5-0 when the big Czech due to a right shoulder injury.
Berdych, who reached the quarterfinals at this year's Australian Open, was last year's Wimbledon runner-up to the former No. 1 Nadal.
Another former world No. 1, Juan Carlos Ferrero, reached the round of 16 when his opponent retired on Saturday. The unseeded former U.S. Open runner-up Ferrero was leading 31st-seeded fellow Spaniard Marcel Granollers 6-1, 4-3 when Granollers quit.
The former French Open champion Ferrero, the 2003 U.S. Open runner-up to American Andy Roddick, will meet Tipsarevic in his next outing.