Federer back in control and sets Aussie Open record

Following a tricky five-set win against Gilles Simon two nights earlier, defending champion Roger Federer came out flying against Xavier Malisse, dismissing the Belgian 6-3, 6-3, 6-1 on Friday afternoon at the Australian Open.

With the victory, his 57th match win in Melbourne (57-7), the 29-year-old Federer overtook Stefan Edberg (56-10) atop the list of Open Era win leaders at the year’s first Grand Slam.

Federer, who opened the match with a break of serve, stepped his game up another notch after the Belgian broke for a 3-1 lead in the second set. Federer went on a run of 10 straight games before Malisse finally held, forcing Federer to close out the match on serve.

"I thought today was intense," assessed Federer. "The first two sets almost didn't reflect how tough it could have been. Or how tough it was. I think that maybe broke his will a little bit because he was up 3-1 in the second set. Then I was able to come back and win 10 straight games which was obviously a great run I got on. I was able to do a few different things."

The four-time champion will attempt to reach his 27th straight Grand Slam quarter-final when he next faces Spaniard Tommy Robredo, who advanced with a 5-7, 6-2, 6-4, 6-2 win over Ukrainian Sergiy Stakhovsky. Federer has a 9-0 record against the 28-year-old Spaniard, a former World No. 5 who is currently ranked No. 52.

Date: 21.01.2011, Source: ATP


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