Federer books semis spot

2012-11-08 18:08
Roger Federer (AP)

London - Roger Federer clinched a place in the semi-finals of the ATP Tour Finals on Thursday as the defending champion ground out a 6-4, 7-6 (7/5) win over Spain's David Ferrer at London's O2 Arena.

Federer required a straight sets win over the fourth seed to seal his spot in the last four with one Group B match to spare and he reached that goal despite a scrappy performance that included 39 unforced errors.

While Federer was some way from his best, the world No 2 displayed his priceless knack of elevating his game on the big points as the 31-year-old extended his winning run at the Tour Finals to 12 matches.

As well as securing his semi-final berth, Federer also achieved a notable personal landmark by recording his 70th match win of the year - the first time he has done that since he was at the very peak of his form in 2006.

It was a familiar story for Ferrer, who has now lost all 14 of his meetings with Federer, and the Spaniard will need a victory over Janko Tipsarevic in his final match on Saturday to have any chance of qualifying for the semi-finals.

Going into this match Ferrer had won only three of 30 sets against Federer and, although he walked on court on an 11-match unbeaten run that brought him titles at the Valencia Open and Paris Masters, the 30-year-old was soon playing second fiddle to the Swiss yet again.

Presented with a golden chance to secure a vital break in the first game, Ferrer was unable to convert as Federer wriggled out of trouble three times.

With Ferrer still cursing that missed opportunity, Federer went for the kill and pressured the Spaniard in a crucial mistake, an off-balance backhand that sailed long, to break for a 2-0 lead.

This was Ferrer's 12th match in 16 days and he could have been forgiven for waving the white flag when three more chances to break slipped through his fingers during a marathon third game.

To his credit he refused to surrender and earned two more break points in the Swiss star's next service game, finally converting one at the eighth attempt when Federer pushed a backhand wide.

But, despite struggling badly on his first serve, Federer was still able to wrestle the set away from Ferrer with a ruthless break to love at 5-4.

That burst of brilliance from Federer was followed by another dip and he had to stave off two break points in the first game of the second set.

Ferrer remained a nuisance for Federer, who was throwing in enough unforced errors to keep the Spaniard in with a chance, and it needed a tie-break to decide the set.

However, Federer, shrugging off his inconsistent spell, finally saw off the dogged Ferrer with a pair of brilliant forehand winners to settle the contest.

Results on Thursday from the ATP World Tour finals on indoor hard courts at the O2 Arena (seedings in parentheses):


Group B

Roger Federer (2), Switzerland, def. David Ferrer (4), Spain, 6-4, 7-6 (7/5).


Group A

Leander Paes, India, and Radek Stepanek (3), Czech Republic, def. Marcel Granollers and Marc Lopez (6), Spain, 7-5, 6-4.


What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Live scoring

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


The 2017/18 PSL season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Which is your favourite Grand Slam of the year?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.