Gasquet topples Federer to reach the final eight in Rome.

Richard Gasquet

Federer’s hopes of spending more time on the clay courts ahead of the French Open, which starts on 22 May, were dashed by Gasquet, who came from a set down to beat the Swiss 4-6, 7-6, 7-6 for the first time since 2005. The Frenchman lost the first 10 points of the match, but hit back to win the next 10 as they shared the first six games. But Federer made the crucial break in game seven and when he broke again in game five of the second set, a straightforward victory looked likely. However, Gasquet broke back and took the set to a tie-break which he won with a service winner. The final set also went to a tie-break and this time, Federer missed the line with a forehand to set up match point before sending a backhand long to gift Gasquet the win. “I had a lot of good chances at a set, 4-3 and serving and then at 4-4 and 15-40 (on Gasquet’s serve),” said Federer.

“It was tough to play out there, it was a slippery court. Richard started to play better as the match went on. In particular he was serving better, my level went down and Richard made it worse. “It was tough, I never felt I was probably going to win the (third set) breaker, it’s not fun to play that way.”



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