Federer sets Tsonga quarter-final clash

Roger Federer is yet to spend more than an hour on court at the Monte Carlo Rolex Masters. Following a 52-minute win over Radek Stepanek on Wednesday, the Swiss advanced to the quarter-finals in 57 minutes, dismissing Lukas Rosol 6-4, 6-1.

The 32-year-old Federer won 91 per cent of his first serve points and hit 24 winners to 18 unforced errors, breaking Rosol four times to record his second win this season over the Czech.

"I think it was a bit rocky in the beginning," said Federer, who initially trailed 1-3. "I was able to find my way into the match. After four games you usually kind of know what's going to work, what's not going to work. At the end I think I had good variation. I also came to the net some. I was effective on break points. My first serve started to work better. So I just think it was a more difficult start to the match."

The fourth-seeded Federer earned a quarter-final clash with Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who earlier fought from a set down to beat Fabio Fognini. Federer leads their Head to Head series 10-4, beating Tsonga in the fourth round of the Australian Open in January in their most recent meeting. However, Tsonga won their last clay-court contest, beating Federer in the Roland Garros quarter-finals last year.

"I didn't play a very good match against him at the French last year," said Federer. "That was a bit of a disaster for me. On the other side, I played a really good match against him in the Australian Open this year. So I'm kind of excited to see what's going to happen this time around. I think Jo played the semis here last year, so he's played here well in the past. I have to make sure I play aggressive myself and not become too passive just because we're on clay."

Federer is making his first appearance since 2011 at the Monte-Carlo Country Club. After three runner-up finishes in 2006-'08, the Basel native is looking to win the title for the first time and claim his 22nd ATP World Tour Masters 1000 crown.

Date: 17th April 2014, Source: ATP


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