Federer beats Ferrer to reach semi-finals at World Tour Finals

Defending champion Roger Federer guaranteed his place in the last four of the ATP World Tour Finals with a straight-sets win over Spain's David Ferrer on Thursday.

The Swiss world number two, bidding for a record-extending seventh title at the end-of-season finale, dished out yet more punishment to Ferrer in a 6-4 7-6 victory at the O2, taking his career record over the tenacious Spaniard to 14-0.

Federer improved to 2-0 in round robin play this week, with his 41st victory at the season-ending championships, after withstanding break-point pressure from Ferrer. It was his 70th match win of the season (70-10) and his 40th on a hard-court (40-5). The Swiss superstar remains on course to capture his season-ending seventh title and his 77th trophy, which would tie him at No. 3 in the all-time title leaders list with John McEnroe.

first three games over a 21-minute period. Ferrer failed to convert three in the opening game, Federer converted his first in the second game, as Ferrer struck a forehand long, while Ferrer failed on three occasions in game three. At 0-3, the writing was on the wall for Ferrer, but he won three successive games with a brand of tennis that has helped him compile 73 wins in a career-best year. But Federer raised the tempo in the 10th game with two powerful groundstrokes. At 4-5, 0/40, Ferrer mis-timed a backhand wide. Playing deep behind the baseline, it was his 13th error of the 49-minute set.

Both players lost just six point on serve through eight service games in the second set. Ferrer could not convert two break point chances in the opening game, as Federer produced an exquisite angled volley and lob volley to stay alive. At 5-6, Ferrer won four straight points from 0/30 to take the set to a tie-break. Federer, who received wolf-whistles for changing his shirt, returned refreshed and opened up a 4-2 lead in the tie-break. Well-placed serves moved Federer further ahead to 6-3. He snatched at a forehand on his first match point and Ferrer hit an unreturned serve on the second. But Federer soon celebrated his 14th straight win over Ferrer.

"I'm extremely happy, it's a tough match. David's been on a great run, winning in Paris was so deserving," Federer said on court. "It was a long match and I'm extremely happy."

"Ferrer is so respected by the fellow competitors. I enjoy playing against him, not because the 14-0 record but because he's a great guy and a great competitor."

Federer, who beat Ferrer in one hour and 49 minutes, has remarkably won 29 of 32 sets in their meetings. He has now reached the season-ending semi-finals for the 10th time in 11 appearances.

Incredibly, he now has a 102-1 lifetime record against opponents aged 30 and over. His only loss came against 31-year-old Andre Agassi at the Sony Open Tennis in March 2002. Federer, aged 31, has not lost at The O2 in London since 2009 to Nikolay Davydenko, the eventual champion that year.

Date: 8th November 2012, Source: Reuters and ATP


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