ROGER Federer and Andy Murray swept into the French Open quarter-finals yesterday.
Second seed Federer, the 2009 champion, made the last eight for the 11th time with a 6-3, 4-6, 6-4, 6-1 win over France’s Gael Monfils and goes on to face Davis Cup-winning team-mate Stan Wawrinka.
British third seed Murray ended the hopes of another home player, seeing off unseeded Jeremy Chardy 6-4, 3-6, 6-3, 6-2. He will next take on seventh-seeded Spaniard David Ferrer.
Federer raced through the final two sets yesterday in just over an hour after the last-16 tie was delicately poised at a set apiece when it was suspended in the chilly gloom of Sunday evening.
“I feel fresh and pumped up to be back in the quarter-finals again after missing out last year,” said Federer, who was beaten by Ernests Gulbis in the last 16 in 2014.
Monfils, a semi-finalist in 2008, was nowhere near his swashbuckling best yesterday, slipping to a break down in the first game of both sets. At 2-1 down in the fourth, he needed the trainer to be called although the Frenchman’s problems appeared more related to the cold from which he was suffering rather than any physical problem.
He lost the last five games of the contest and, although he saved a match point with a trademark cute drop volley, an equally characteristic wild forehand sealed his fate.
Monfils blamed a fever for his erratic performance. “It was tough because I’m sick. On the eve of the match I was not at my best. I had a bad night and woke up repeatedly. I didn’t have any fever this morning, but my body was sluggish,” said the 28-year-old Frenchman.
Federer will take a 16-2 career advantage over Wawrinka into today’s quarter-final, including a win on clay in Rome earlier this month.
Murray, twice a semi-finalist in Paris, will face 2013 runner-up Ferrer for a place in the last four although Chardy, the world number 45, gave him plenty to think about on a rocking Court Suzanne Lenglen. However, the Frenchman’s temperament let him down at the wrong times as he was broken three times in the fourth set. Chardy committed 10 double faults and 56 unforced errors.
Murray has a 9-6 record against Ferrer but the gritty Spaniard has won all of their four meetings on clay including at Roland Garros in the 2012 quarterfinals.
1-Novak Djokovic (Serbia) beat 20-Richard Gasquet (France) 6-1 6-2 6-3
6-Rafa Nadal (Spain) beat Jack Sock (U.S.) 6-3 6-1 5-7 6-2
3-Andy Murray (Britain) beat Jeremy Chardy (France) 6-4 3-6 6-3 6-2
7-David Ferrer (Spain) beat 9-Marin Cilic (Croatia) 6-2 6-2 6-4
2-Roger Federer (Switzerland) beat 13-Gael Monfils (France) 6-3 4-6 6-4 6-1