Federer sees off Tomic, faces Raonic next

World No. 2 and four-time Australian Open champion Roger Federer claimed his 250th Grand Slam championship win on Saturday night in Melbourne as he ended the hopes of Australian No. 1 Bernard Tomic with a 6-4, 7-6(5), 6-1 victory in the third round.

"I had to be able to bring the whole repertoire to the court today, defence and offence, which I enjoy," said Federer, adding that Tomic had vastly improved.

"I've never seen him play offensive tennis against me in the past," commented Federer, adding that Tomic needs to work on maintaining his level of play for the entire season. "We play 10, 11 months of the year, it's about bringing it every single day."

Tomic came into the clash in confident mood, having won his first ATP World Tour title at the Apia International Sydney (d. Anderson) a week earlier, and looked set to split sets with Federer when he led 4-1 in the second set tie-break.

17 time Grand Slam champion Federer fought back, though, and won six of the next seven points to take a commanding lead in the match. From there, he broke Tomic twice in the third set to wrap up victory in just under two hours. The Swiss converted only three of his 16 break points, but hit 46 winners and 11 aces.

"I thought it was a really good match," said Tomic. "The first two sets we played really good tennis. It came down to one point, I think. I was pretty satisfied with my tennis. I was competing out there, trying to hang in there with him. He just came up with good stuff when he really needed it the most."

"He deserved to win, he is the best and greatest tennis player in history. You learn every time you see him playing. I nominate him to win the Australian Open, I'm sure he has many chances to achieve the title. It is good to lose from a hero."

The 31-year-old Federer is bidding to add to his Australian Open trophies in 2004, 2006, 2007 and 2010 and goes onto face another upcoming ATP World Tour star, Milos Raonic. The Canadian No. 13 seed, who revealed he had been suffering from a fever the past two days, fired 23 aces to defeat Germany’s Philipp Kohlschreiber 7-6(4), 6-3, 6-4 in one hour and 52 minutes.

"He's obviously got one of the best serves in the game," Federer said, describing Raonic who has landed 71 aces this week compared to Federer's 23. "You always feel, especially after an off season like the one we've just had, he's maybe improved again a few things," said Federer, who is ready for the unexpected.

Date: 19th January 2013, Source: ATP


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