Federer produced a dominating performance to reach Wimbledon third round

Roger Federer eased into the third round at Wimbledon with a comfortable 6-3 7-5 6-3 win over Gilles Muller on Centre Court.

The fourth seed wrapped up the win in one hour and 34 minutes, with the Centre Court roof coming out during the second set with play briefly suspended due to rain.

The Swiss fired 25 aces, 44 winners and committed just five unforced errors. In a near-faultless serving display, he won 91 per cent of points on his first serve and did not face a break point.

"It was a real serving contest out there," said Federer. "I'm happy I made it because the second set was tough with the rain delay. I was happy to break him at 6-5 because I wasn't having many looks in on his serve.

"It's only been my second match, and it was a totally different opponent, a big lefty coming to the net.

"Against a player like this you're more dependent on the serve and return and first couple of shots, so it doesn't change much against a player like him," said Federer of the closed roof. "Today I thought it was cooler with the roof open, and then footing and tactics, I didn't change anything from before and after.

"It's nice for the confidence, but on a different day it's a different opponent. Maybe next round I might not serve that many first serves or aces, so it is nice to get those aces and those wins like that, but I've got to keep working hard and trying to be consistent."

Federer made the breakthrough in the fifth game of the first set, a chip return setting up the pass which Muller could only blast into the net.

A second break, this one in the ninth game, handed Federer the first set after just 24 minutes on Centre Court.

It took Muller until the fifth game of the second set to win a point on Federer's first serve, but the seven-time champion was undeterred and held for a 3-2 lead.

Play was then suspended with Federer 4-3 up in the second while the roof was extended over Centre Court. After play had resumed, Federer pounced at 6-5 with another break to take the second set after Muller found the net again.

Federer broke again for 3-1 before closing out the victory, after which he confirmed he was fine following a nasty-looking slip in the third game of the third set.

"Everything was OK," he added. "I didn't think I was going to go down. I thought Gilles would go down the line. It is slippery coming forward, that's where the grass is still green but I'm happy that I'm OK."

Every time the Swiss has played the Luxembourger lefty he has settled the ledger without the loss of a set. Each time - Indian Wells (2005), Bangkok (2005) and the US Open (2008) – he has gone on to win the title.

"Oh, really? Ohh. Are you sure?" Federer asked, with a laugh, when told during the post-match press conference. "I'll go check it out. I'm happy to hear that.

"I'm very happy with the match today because I knew it could have been difficult. And we saw signs of it I think midway through the second set when I think for four straight games I didn't see much on his serve. Then actually the rain delay kind of changed things around. I came out and I was a bit more clear of how I was going to return him."

The 32-year-old Federer is bidding to win an unprecedented eighth title at the All England Club. The Swiss has a 69-8 tournament record, winning the title in 2003-’07, ’09 and ’12. His 17th and most recent Grand Slam championship came two years ago on the lawns of Wimbledon, with victory over Andy Murray.

That aside, what Federer was more pleased about was sparing his parents another dose of nail-biting drama - a year after suffering a shock second-round defeat.

Royal Box guests Lynette and Robbie Federer patiently sat through Nadal's nerve-shredding win over Czech Lukas Rosol before applauding Briton Heather Watson as she produced a gutsy display before going down in three sets to Germany's Angelique Kerber.

Almost five and a half hours after taking their seats did they finally get a glimpse of their son who is lauded the world over.

Federer then provided another reminder of how he amassed a record 17 grand slam titles.

He will either meet Marcel Granollers (ATP 30) or Santiago Giraldo (ATP 35) in the third round.

Date: 26th June 2014, Source: ESPN, ATP and Reuters


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