Roger Federer continues the search for No.18 when he takes on Richard Gasquet in Wednesday night’s quarter-final, the 46th Grand Slam QF of his illustrious career. An impressive display against John Isner saw the current No.2 win in straight sets in front of the Arthur Ashe night crowd. Federer v Gasquet Head to Head stands at 14-2.
Federer had come into the tournament with a lengthy run of consecutive holds but saw that come to an end in round three against Philipp Kohlschreiber when the German broke twice in a straight sets loss. However, he would not be broken by Isner in five attempts the next round – although Isner’s returning level is probably not going to help give much away when analysing how well Federer is serving.
Isner was his usually stern self on serve in that match, desperately clinging on to his own record of consecutive holds that spanned back to last year’s tournament. It seemed on the cards that Isner might once more exit in a match he wasn’t broken in but Federer finally broke through in the last game of a 7-6 7-6 7-5 victory. Even more impressively, the first set 7-0 tiebreak was the first such Isner had lost in his career.
Gasquet’s failure to win fourth round matches at grand slams had become almost legendary but he has had a change of fortunes recently, winning three of his last four to improve that record to 4-16. Last night’s victory over Tomas Berdych was his highest ranking win of the four and one that came as somewhat of a surprise after the Czech had won their last three meetings.
With a 2-14 career record against Federer, one of which was their very first meeting, it doesn’t look too promising for Gasquet who last won in 2011 and failed to win a set in each of their last six matches. Federer will be buoyed by the absence of Andy Murray from the quarter final stage and should look to take advantage to make his first US Open final since 2009.
Prediction – Roger Federer in straight sets
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