ThrowbackTimes Madrid: Roger Federer eases past Stan Wawrinka to reach quarters



by   |  VIEW 1704

ThrowbackTimes Madrid: Roger Federer eases past Stan Wawrinka to reach quarters

Back in 2009, Roger Federer claimed the title in Madrid in Caja Magica, becoming the first champion of this event held on clay. In the last two matches, Roger took down Juan Martin del Potro and Rafael Nadal for the first Masters 1000 crown since Cincinnati 2007.

A year later, Federer conquered the Australian Open before losing ground a little bit, suffering early losses in Indian Wells, Miami and Rome but heading to Madrid as the top seed ahead of Nadal. The last year's champion defeated Benjamin Becker in the second round, setting the clash against a compatriot Stan Wawrinka in the battle for the quarter-final.

It was their fifth meeting and the third straight in the round of 16 at Masters 1000 tournaments in the last 13 months, with Federer scoring a commanding 6-3, 6-1 triumph in 69 minutes. Stan had challenging tasks in front of him that spring on clay, losing to Novak Djokovic in Monte Carlo and Rafael Nadal in Rome, hoping to change his luck in Madrid against another great rival and compatriot.

He stood no chance, though, as Federer lost 11 points in eight service games, playing against only one break chance and keeping the pressure on Wawrinka all the time. The lower-ranked Swiss converted that opportunity but it wasn't enough to keep him safe, not after dropping 55% of the points behind the initial shot and five breaks suffered from 11 opportunities offered to Roger.

Interestingly, Federer sprayed a forehand error in the very first game to give serve away and send Stan in front, seizing the third chance on the return in the next game to pull the break back and level the score at 1-1. Wawrinka survived in the fourth game to remain on the positive side of the scoreboard, closing the game with a volley winner at the net and missing the opportunity to move in front on the return a few minutes later after a loose backhand.

The younger Swiss was punished in the very next game, netting a backhand to suffer a break and finding himself 5-2 down following an ace from Roger in game seven. Serving for the set at 5-3, Federer landed another ace to secure the opener after 42 minutes, settling into an excellent rhythm and earning a break at the beginning of the second set with a return winner.

A volley winner secured another break for the defending champion in game three, opening a 5-1 gap with a forehand winner and moving over the top with another break in game seven when Stan sent a volley long.