In Roger Federer's words: 'I was in a hurry to finish the match before dark'


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In Roger Federer's words: 'I was in a hurry to finish the match before dark'

Competing in the third round at Wimbledon for the second time in three years, Roger Federer ousted Mardy Fish 6-3, 6-1, 4-6, 6-1 in two hours to find himself in the second week at the All England Club in 2003. Roger played well against Hyung-Taik Lee and Stefan Koubek in the previous rounds, losing serve three times and spending three hours on the court to preserve energy for the American who took a set out from the Swiss before losing ground in the fourth to propel Federer through.

Roger fended off five out of six break chances, suffering that one break that cost him the third set, dominating others to seal the deal just before dark after two rain delays. The Swiss claimed the opening two sets in no time at all, struggling to break his opponent in the third and giving serve away once to hand the set to Mardy who couldn't keep that level in the fourth when he got broken twice.

Serving for the triumph at 5-1 and rushing to seal the deal, Roger almost suffered a break, staying calm and moving over the top in the final moments before dark. "I'm happy to finish the match in one day after so many breaks; it got dark in the end.

I grabbed that second break and served for the victory, almost dropping that service game as I wanted to finish as quickly as possible. I think I played a good match today. I'm thrilled to be in the second week, passing three tough early rounds and focusing on the next rival after taking a couple of days off.

Still, I don't want to look further than my next opponent; there's no room for that and I don't want to make a mistake. I want to keep the same attitude I had throughout the first week and hope I can carry it into the second week."