Roger Federer Sails to Semifinals of Gerry Weber Open


Defending champion Roger Federer defeated Matthew Ebden 7-6 (2), 7-5 to reach the semifinals of the grass-court Gerry Weber Open on Friday.

Federer was made to work hard by Ebden, who saved five of the eight break points he faced and was leading 5-3 in the second set.

Federer, who saved two match points against Benoit Paire in the second round the day before, recovered to go 6-5 up and then broke Ebden to take his first match point for a meeting with American qualifier Denis Kudla.

Kudla earlier defeated Japan’s Yuichi Sugita 6-2, 7-5 to book his semifinal place.

Federer, who won his 18th grass-court title in Stuttgart on Sunday, is just three match wins away from matching Jimmy Connors’ record of 174 victories on grass.

Federer extended his grass-court winning streak to 19, including the Stuttgart title and last year’s titles in Halle and Wimbledon. He is bidding for a record-extending 10th trophy in Halle.

Nick Kyrgios has continued his impressive grasscourt form with a fine victory over Kyle Edmund to secure a quarter-final place at Queen’s Club in London.

But the the mercurial Australian No.1 insisted afterwards he was unfazed that the BBC, who were showing the game live in the UK, had to apologise for his bad language during the win.

Kyrgios, who beat two-time Wimbledon champion Andy Murray in the previous round, dispatched Murray’s fellow Brit Edmund 7-6 (7-3) 6-7 (5-7) 6-3 with a powerful display of stunning, sometimes outrageous groundstrokes, punctuated with some lethal serving, bombing down 32 aces.

But as he battled to see out the match in the decider, he was heard swearing at his player’s box in frustration at missing a match point.

Kyrgios, who lost to world No.1 Roger Federer in a tight semi-final at the Stuttgart Open last week, had won his only previous ATP World tour meeting with Edmund at the 2014 Nottingham Challenger event.

But the 23-year-old knew he would face a real battle to prevent the seventh seed reaching the last eight for the second time in three years.

Kyrgios got off to the best possible start when he grabbed the first set on a tiebreak, nailing his advantage with a rasping two-handed backhand bang on 40 minutes.

The second set was again dominated by serve although British No.1 Edmund banked three points off Kyrgios’ serve in the second tiebreak to draw level.

However, Kyrgios broke Edmund early in the decider and despite some wayward shots which saw him lose his temper at his box, he was able to see out the victory in two hours, 11 minutes.

“It was a pretty high-level match from both players,” said Kyrgios, who faced only one break point on his serve.

“Obviously I served really, really well. I found my rhythm quite early.

“I feel pretty good. I got a bit tight towards the end of the match, which is normal. I haven’t played a lot of matches in the last couple of months.

Kyrgios will next face defending champion Feliciano Lopez in Friday’s quarter-finals.

The Spaniard walked through to the last eight after Milos Raonic pulled out with a right shoulder injury despite winning his first round match on Tuesday.

Unseeded 12-time grand slam champion Novak Djokovic made sure he reached the quarter-finals as he hammered second-seeded Grigor Dimitrov, his first victory over a top-10 opponent since last May.



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