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Page last updated at 14:10 GMT, Monday, 29 June 2009 15:10 UK

Federer sweeps into quarter-final

WIMBLEDON
Date: 22 June - 5 July
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Roger Federer

Highlights - Federer prevails in tie-break (UK users only)

By Caroline Cheese
BBC Sport at Wimbledon

Five-time champion Roger Federer was in supreme form on Centre Court as he defeated Robin Soderling 6-4 7-6 (7-5) 7-6 (7-5) to reach the quarter-finals.

Soderling, who lost to Federer in the French Open final, played well, but the second seed was simply a class above.

After Federer broke once to take the first set, Soderling conceded only three points on serve in the second, but still lost it on a tie-break.

And Federer edged another hard-fought tie-break to advance in straight sets.

He will play Ivo Karlovic in Wednesday's quarter-finals after the giant Croat beat Fernando Verdasco.

Federer, chasing a record 15th Grand Slam title, felt it was hard to judge his form in a big-serving contest against Soderling.

Federer happy to win 'serving contest'

"I think today was just a serving contest, not too many rallies," he told BBC Sport.

"Today was hard to get through. Robin served great, thank goodness he served a double fault at the end of the tie-break because otherwise it could have been four sets."

Soderling has now played 11 matches against Federer and lost every one, and there was little in Monday's match to offer him any encouragement that he may one day break that miserable run.

"Every time I go on court, I believe I can win. I always believe in myself," he said. "I think I'm getting closer. I played better today than the last couple of times. I think I deserved a better ending today."

The Swede rocketed to attention at Roland Garros when he knocked out four-time defending champion Rafa Nadal and went on to reach his maiden Grand Slam final.

To his great credit, the 24-year-old has maintained that form on the grass, dropping two sets on his way to the fourth round here.

He served well, hit his groundstrokes with precision, and had some success at the net too.

Yet all this merely pushed Federer into producing his very best.

606: DEBATE

After games went with serve to 4-4 in the first set, Soderling faltered for the first time, his forehand letting him down.

The Swede saved two break points, but hit another forehand into the net on the third and Federer served out with ease.

Soderling, if anything, improved in the second set, winning his first three service games to love - but crucially, Federer's serve was also proving impregnable.

The tie-break was closely-fought, Soderling pegging Federer back to 5-5 from 5-3 but then overcooking a forehand at 6-5 to give the Swiss a two-set lead.

Soderling refused to crumble in the third, and even engineered a first break point of the match at 4-4, but despite having a look at a second serve, the Swede netted his return.

There was more hope for the 13th seed in the tie-break.

He was two serves away from taking the third set at 5-4 but Federer produced the the sort of miraculous forehand winner that took him to five consecutive Wimbledon titles, and the 13th seed then double-faulted to give Federer match point.

Soderling went wide with his return and the world number two came through in a minute under two hours.



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see also
Soderling v Federer as it happened
29 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Venus and Serena reach last eight
29 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Djokovic & Roddick into quarters
29 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Robson eases to opening victory
29 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Federer comes through first test
26 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Federer & Djokovic make progress
24 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Federer opens with easy victory
22 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Order of play
23 May 09 |  Tennis
Results
26 Jun 07 |  Results
Women's singles results
26 Jun 07 |  Results
Wimbledon: Live map
22 Jun 09 |  Tennis
Men's singles draw
26 Aug 11 |  Tennis
Women's singles draw
28 Jan 10 |  Tennis


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