Wimbledon 2017: I didn’t expect it to go that easy, says Roger Federer

Roger Federer and Andy Murray, much to the delight of the Centre Court crowd, both reached the Wimbledon quarterfinals on Monday. Federer is a seven-time champion at the All England Club and one of the fan favorites. He advanced to the quarterfinals for the 15th time by beating Grigor Dimitrov 6-4, 6-2, 6-4.

By: AP | Updated: July 11, 2017 12:27 pm
Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Indian Express Roger Federer first reached the Wimbledon quarterfinals in 2001 and then won the first of five straight titles in 2003. (Source: AP)

Roger Federer and Andy Murray, much to the delight of the Centre Court crowd, both reached the Wimbledon quarterfinals on Monday.

Federer is a seven-time champion at the All England Club and one of the fan favorites. He advanced to the quarterfinals for the 15th time by beating Grigor Dimitrov 6-4, 6-2, 6-4.

“I didn’t expect it go to that easy,” said Federer, the Australian Open champion. “It wasn’t as easy maybe as it looks like.”

Murray is also adored at the grass-court major. He is a two-time Wimbledon champion, but maybe more important, he is British and in 2013 became the first homegrown player to win the men’s title in 77 years.

On Monday, he beat Benoit Paire 7-6 (1), 6-4, 6-4.

“I’ve done a good job so far here,” said Murray, the defending champion. “Today was by far the best I hit the ball, the cleanest I hit the ball. I was happy about that.”

The first man to reach the quarterfinals was Marin Cilic. The seventh-seeded Croat beat Roberto Bautista Agut 6-2, 6-2, 6-2. Cilic, who won the U.S. Open in 2014, will be playing the quarterfinals at the All England Club for the fourth straight year.

In the women’s draw, five-time Wimbledon champion Venus Williams won, and top-ranked Angelique Kerber lost.

Federer first reached the Wimbledon quarterfinals in 2001 and then won the first of five straight titles in 2003. He will next face either Milos Raonic or Alexander Zverev.

Murray will play Sam Querrey on Wednesday. The 24th-seeded American defeated Kevin Anderson 5-7, 7-6 (5), 6-3, 6-7 (11), 6-3.

Williams, who last won the title at the All England Club in 2008, advanced to the quarterfinals by beating 19-year-old Ana Konjuh 6-3, 6-2. She is playing at the grass-court major for the 20th time in her career. Her Wimbledon debut came a few months before Konjuh was born.

“Winning never gets old at any stage in your career, ever, ever,” Williams said.

Kerber, who reached the Wimbledon final last year but lost to Serena Williams, was beaten by Garbine Muguruza on No. 2 Court, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4.

With the loss by Kerber, either Simona Halep or Karolina Pliskova will take over as the top-ranked player after the tournament. Halep also advanced Monday, while Pliskova lost in the second round.

Williams will next face French Open champion Jelena Ostapenko in the quarterfinals. The 20-year-old Latvian, who won her first tour-level title at Roland Garros last month, beat fourth-seeded Elina Svitolina 6-3, 7-6 (6) on Court 12.

“I think I’ll see what happens when I get out there,” Williams said of Ostapenko. “I mean, I’m sure she hits well off all sides. I have to see what the nuances are once the game starts, because you can’t necessarily plan for those.”

Ostapenko led Svitolina 5-3 in the second set, but was broken and forced into a tiebreaker. She finally won by converting her eighth match point.

Ostapenko had never before been past the third round at a major tournament prior to this year’s French Open. She was the first woman to win her debut tour-level title at a Grand Slam tournament since 1979.

At Wimbledon, Ostapenko is into the quarterfinals for the first time. However, she won the girls’ title at the All England Club in 2014.

“I think I play better with every match, also like at the French,” Ostapenko said. “So I hope I can keep it up.”

Two-time Grand Slam champion Svetlana Kuznetsova, Magdalena Rybarikova, CoCo Vandeweghe and Johanna Konta also advanced to the quarterfinals.

Kuznetsova was the first to finish her match on Monday, beating Agnieszka Radwanska 6-2, 6-4.

The seventh-seeded Russian is a two-time Grand Slam champion who will be playing in the Wimbledon quarterfinals for the fourth time. She has never advanced past that stage.

In the quarterfinals, Kuznetsova will face Muguruza.

Rybarikova, who beat Pliskova in the second round, defeated Petra Martic of Croatia 6-4, 2-6, 6-3 and advanced to the Wimbledon quarterfinals for the first time.

In the quarterfinals, Rybarikova will face Vandeweghe, while Halep will play Konta.

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