Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : June 5th 2013 Contents times and took a shot to the body
on the point that put Tsonga
ahead to stay in the final set.
Facing a break point, Federer
sliced a drop shot, and Tsonga
raced forward to scoop it up. He
whacked a backhand that clipped
the net cord and then drilled Fed-
erer under his right arm.
That made it 4-3, and Tsonga
quickly won the final two games.
When he closed out the victory,
Federer greeted him with a gra-
cious smile and two congratula-
tory pats on the stomach.
A jubilant Tsonga then went
spinning across the court, waving
his arms as the partisan crowd
Federer, long a fan favourite in
Paris, also earned a lusty cheer
as he headed to the exit. He
responded by applauding the
The last time Federer lost to a
player ranked so low in a major
tournament was at Wimbledon
two years ago, when the No. 19-
ranked Tsonga overcame a two-
set deficit to beat him.
The French Open has always
been the most difficult major
event for Federer. He won his lone
Roland Garros title in 2009 to
complete a career Grand Slam and
tie Pete Sampras record of 14
Now 31, he has yet to win any
tournament in 2013, his longest
drought to start a year since 2000.
Williams is also 31 but playing
at her peak---although that wasn t
the case for a long stretch against
Kuznetsova. Williams overcame
an inconsistent serve, erratic
groundstrokes and a 2-love deficit
in the final set, winning five con-
secutive games and then closing
the victory with a forehand win-
ner and a scream.
"Yes!" she hollered.
It was the first real test of the
tournament for Williams, who
lost ten games after losing a total
of ten games in her four earlier
matches. She laughed at herself,
screamed at herself, violently
shook her uncooperative racket
and cocked it over her head,
threatening to fling it before she
changed her mind.
Williams finally found a way
out of her funk---and into the
semifinals. She extended her
career-best winning streak to 29
In a post-match on-court inter-
view, Williams seemed spent.
"I m very happy to have won
this quarterfinal because the
whole night I was afraid of my
quarterfinal match," she told the
crowd in French. "It was a very
tough match today, but it s good
for me because, I don t know, but
it s very good. I am exhausted."
Williams is the first American
woman to reach the French Open
semifinals since Jennifer Capriati
in 2004. Her opponent Thursday
will be 2012 runner-up Sara
Errani, who advanced by beating
No 4 Agnieszka Radwanska 6-4,
Williams is 5-0 against Errani.
Wednesday, June 5, 2013 www.guardian.co.tt Guardian
PARIS---By Roger Federer s stan-
dards, defeat came early in the French
Open. And it came quickly.
The 17-time Grand Slam champion
lost yesterday in the quarterfinals to
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France, 7-5, 6-
Federer was eliminated before the
semifinals for the second time in past
three Grand Slam tournaments, but
only the fifth time in the past nine
years at a major event. Tsonga was
responsible for two of the losses---he
also beat Federer in the quarterfinals
at Wimbledon in 2011.
Serena Williams narrowly averted
the fate that befell Federer. She came
from behind in the third set and
advanced to the French Open semi-
finals for the first time since 2003
when she defeated Svetlana Kuznetsova
6-1, 3-6, 6-3.
Williams had been beaten the last
four times she reached the Roland
Garros quarterfinals, most recently in
2010. The 15-time Grand Slam cham-
pion, who is ranked No. 1, won her
only French Open title in 2002.
Tsonga earned his first berth in the
Roland Garros semifinals and is trying
to become the first Frenchman to win
the tournament since Yannick Noah
in 1983. He s the first Frenchman to
reach the semifinals since Gael Monfils
"I can t have better a dream," Tsonga
told the centre court crowd. "So far
I played very well. I played against a
champion today, a guy who has won
everything. Today, it s my turn."
On Friday he ll play No. 4-seeded
David Ferrer, who beat fellow Spaniard
Tommy Robredo 6-2, 6-1, 6-1.
Tsonga was runner-up to Novak
Djokovic at the 2008 Australian Open,
his best Grand Slam result. Ranked
No. 8, he dominated Federer with his
blend of power and athleticism.
Federer took a 4-2 lead but played
like a mere mortal after that. He blew
three overheads, missed several easy
volleys, hit no aces, dropped serve six
France's Jo-Wilfried Tsonga returns against Switzerland's Roger Federer, defeating Federer in three sets 7-5, 6-3,
6-3, in their quarterfinal match at the French Open tennis tournament, at Roland Garros stadium in Paris,
yesterday. AP PHOTO
Federer loses to Tsonga
in French Open quarters
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