Federer battles back to beat Del Potro and moves into French Open SFs

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Roger Federer came back from two sets down to defeat the Argentine Juan Martin del Potro, winning 3-6  6-7 (4)  6-2  6-0  6-3 and bookig his place in the semifinals of the 2012 Roland Garros.

Delpo managed to break Federer’s serve twice to take a 4-1 lead in the first set. Despite the Swiss reclaiming one of them, he couldn’t avert the outcome of the set and the Argentine got off to a perfect start.

Both players came up with some heavy hitting in set 2, standing almost inside the baseline and smashing each other to bits. Federer seemed to be back on track after taking Del Potro’s serve in the fifth game, but he subsequently dropped his own and the score was levelled at 3-3. With no more breaks of serve, the set was going to be decided in a tiebreak. The Argentine got off to a dream start, securing himself two minibreaks to go 5-2 up. Holding on tight, he didn’t let this big opportunity slip out of his hands and took a 2-0 set lead.

Federer showed his frustration on a few occassions, not quite content with the way he was hitting the ball. But going into the match with a 11-2 head to head record against Delpo, many tennis pundits would have still favoured him to win this one.

As some might have expected, the tide started turning with the players entering the third set. Federer stepped up a gear and the Argentine began to misfire his groundstrokes more frequently, giving the Swiss the upper hand. Two breaks of serve for the 16 time Grand Slam champion secured him the set and he put himself back into the driving seat.

Federer continued to dominate as he cruised to a 6-0 fourth set win against the ailing Argentine, who looked like his knee problems have returned once again. The Swiss’ tactics were obvious, he was trying to shorten the angles on his groundstrokes, moving Del Potro from side to side,  occasionally finishing the rallies with a well prepared dropshot.

The final break came in the fourth game of the deciding set, Federer taking a 3-1 lead. Del Potro didn’t seem to be able to hurt the Swiss with his penetrating shots any more, coming up with some painful unforced errors. Federer got the job done and in 3 hours and 14 minutes, he booked himself a place in the semifinals against world no.1 Djokovic, who managed to save an unbelievable 4 matchpoints on his way to a victory against the Frenchman Tsonga, winning 6-1  5-7  5-7  7-6 6-1.


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