Federer into last eight
Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:55
The world number one, who has won the title for the last three years, defeated Italy’s Andreas Seppi 6-3 6-3 to extend his winning streak at the tournament to 17 matches.
Another home favourite, Stanislas Wawrinka, was given a stern test by a rejuvenated Ivan Ljubicic before eventually prevailing 6-7 (5/7) 6-3 6-4.
Ljubicic is back in the world’s top 25 after winning in Lyon last week but, having battled for more than two hours, came up just short against the sixth seed.
Marin Cilic, the runner-up in Vienna last week, maintained his late challenge for a place at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London later this month by reaching the second round.
The Croatian fourth seed defeated Philipp Petzschner 6-4 6-4 but seventh seed James Blake was ousted 7-6 (7/4) 6-7 (6/8) 6-4 by France’s Jeremy Chardy.
Fifth seed Radek Stepanek was involved in the day’s longest match, the Czech needing two hours and 20 minutes to see off Florent Serra 3-6 7-6 (7/1) 7-6 (7/1).
Horacio Zeballos reached his first main tour final at the St Petersburg Open last weekend but there will be no repeat this week after he was beaten 7-6 (7/3) 6-4 by Richard Gasquet.