Seven-time champion Roger Federer defeated Florian Mayer to reach the semi-finals of the Gerry Weber Open in Halle.
Federer won 6-0, 7-6 in 64 minutes. Federer steam-rolled through Mayer in the opening set en route to securing it 6-0 in 20 minutes. He won the entirety of points on his first serve, despite putting only 57% of his first serves in.
In contrast, the German put 70% of his first serves in but was able to win only 42% points off them. Federer was also equally impressive in terms of his returns, especially on Mayer’s second serves winning all six points that came his way.
In spite of his dominant display, there were however a couple of problem areas for the Swiss. He struggled to win points on his second serves – he won only 40% of points on his second serves – and also put in a double fault, which threw his otherwise confident performance slightly into disarray.
There wasn’t however any smooth sailing for Federer in the second set as Mayer held his serve for the first time in the match after saving a break point. As the German improved the percentage of points won off his first serves, Federer’s margin on the same statistic dropped considerably.
Moreover, whilst Mayer started to hold his serves with ease, Federer’s momentum looked to have slowed down. The defending champion had a second opportunity to break in the set in the ninth game, but a miscued backhand put paid to his chances.
In the ensuing tie-break, Federer amped his aggressive tactics as Mayer"s confidence started to wobble at the other end. Federer wrapped up the match with a down-the-line backhand return on Mayer"s serve, losing merely one point in the tie-break.
The Swiss had thrice as many winners as the German, 33 to 11 and had 18 unforced errors to Mayer"s 11. He faced no break points on his serve and converted three of the seven break points he had had on Mayer"s serve. In the semi-final, Federer"s to encounter eighth seed Ivo Karlovic, who put up one of the best performances of his career as he upset third seed Tomas Berdych 7-5, 6-7, 6-3 in their quarter-final.
The Croat unleased 45 aces upon the Czech, hitting a new record of aces for three set matches. As such Federer has a difficult task ahead of him on Saturday, in spite of leading Karlovic 12-1 in their previous meetings..