Roger Federer's Wimbledon Nightmare: Tsonga's Unforgettable Cinderella Story

Jo-Wilfried Tsonga came from two sets to love down against Roger Federer at Wimbledon 2011

by Jovica Ilic
Roger Federer's Wimbledon Nightmare: Tsonga's Unforgettable Cinderella Story

In 2010, Tomas Berdych toppled Roger Federer in the Wimbledon quarter-final, leaving Roger without the semi-final at The All England Club for the first time since 2002! A year later, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga did the same after ousting the Swiss in the quarter-final.

The Frenchman produced a marvelous comeback from two sets to love down, becoming the first player to achieve that against Roger at Majors! Jo-Wilfried prevailed 3-6, 6-7, 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 in three hours and eight minutes, moving one step further than 12 months ago when he stopped in the last eight.

The Frenchman entered the record books as only the third player after Lleyton Hewitt and David Nalbandian with a win over Roger from two sets to love down. It could have been the first year with top four seeds in the Wimbledon semi-final since 1995.

However, Tsonga took care and spoiled that, taking ten points less than Roger but playing against only one break chance in the entire clash! Jo-Wilfried served well and stole Roger's serve once in sets three, four and five for a place in the last four.

Interestingly, Roger grabbed that lone break in the encounter's second game. He could not repeat that for the next three hours, an excellent indicator of Jo-Wilfried's performance behind the initial shot in this thrilling win.

A return winner gave Tsonga a break point in game five, and Federer denied it with a solid serve. The Swiss played against another after the Frenchman's volley winner. Roger's well-constructed attack kept him safe, blasting two service winners to bring the game home and move 4-1 in front.

Serving for the set at 5-3, Federer landed three service winners to clinch the opener in swift 27 minutes, hoping for more for the rest of the encounter. Both players served well in set number two, offering no break chances before the tie break.

Roger claimed it 7-3 after a forehand down the line winner, increasing the lead after 74 minutes and taking a big step toward the finish line.

Roger Federer squandered a massive advantage over Tsonga at Wimbledon 2011.

With no room for errors, the Frenchman scored a break in the third set's third game with a powerful forehand down the line that barely landed in and announced his comeback.

Tsonga held at 15 a few minutes later to confirm the advantage and delivered another comfortable service game for a 4-1 lead. Serving for the set at 5-4, Jo-Wilfried found himself 30-0 down and had to be careful at three deuces.

He stayed focused and closed the set with a service winner to reduce the overall deficit and remain in contention. Jo-Wilfried fired a forehand winner in the fourth set's third game for another lead. He cemented it with a hold at love and sealed the set with four service winners at 5-4 to arrange a decider after two and a half hours.

The momentum was on his side of the court for over an hour now, barely losing a point on serve in set number four and landing 13 winners and two unforced errors to leave Roger behind. Feeling the pressure, the Swiss suffered a break in the decider's first game when Jo-Wilfried forced a forehand error in what proved to be the crucial point of the entire clash!

Firing one good serve and forehand after another, Tsonga controlled the pace and moved over the top with another great hold in game ten. He fell to the ground in disbelief and celebrated one of the most significant victories of his career over a six-time Wimbledon champion from the brink of defeat.

Roger Federer Wimbledon Jo-Wilfried Tsonga