Swiss tennis star Roger Federer on Monday entered the quarterfinals of Wimbledon after defeating France’s Adrian Mannarino 6-0, 7-5, 6-4 in the fourth round of the men’s singles event on Centre Court. In women’s singles, 23-time Grand slam winner Serena Williams raced into her 13th Wimbledon quarter-final by thrashing Russian qualifier Evgeniya Rodina 6-2, 6-2 in just 62 minutes.Also Read - Tokyo Olympics 2020: Novak Djokovic, Ash Barty, Stefanos Tsitsipas, Naomi Osaka Headline Tennis Revised Olympic List
Williams, who won the Wimbledon title on her last two visits in 2015 and 2016, is now on an 18-match winning streak at the All England Club. Having missed Wimbledon last year while she prepared to have her first child in September, Serena is in pole position to win her first Grand Slam crown since becoming a mother. The 36-year-old faces Italian world number 52 Camila Giorgi on Tuesday for a place in the semi-finals. Also Read - WATCH: Novak Djokovic Confirms he Will Play Tokyo Olympics Amid Covid Threat
Against Federer, Mannarino was unable to find his rhythm in the first set, unsure of his ball striking, movement and positioning with Federer winning 25 of the 30 points in the 16-minute passage of play. Also Read - Roger Federer Withdraws From Tokyo Olympics 2020 Due to Injury, Wishes Switzerland Team Best of Luck
Errors by Mannarino on two backhands and one forehand handed Federer a 5-0 lead, with the Swiss sealing the set when Mannarino hit a lob long. Though Mannarino’s strong efforts helped him make a comeback in the game with the 7-5 lead in the second set, his efforts soon went in vein in the third set (6-4). Federer will next face eighth-seeded South African Kevin Anderson or Gael Monfils of France.
He leads Anderson 4-0 in their FedEx ATP Head2Head series, but the pair has not met since August 2015 at the Western & Southern Open, while he is 9-4 lifetime against Monfils.
Speaking after the match, Serena admitted she is never satisfied. “I’m a perfectionist. I always find something wrong,” she said.
“It was an interesting match. She was hitting the ball well. That’s why she got this far. It was a good win but it was tougher than the scoreline to be honest.” The 90th Wimbledon win of her career — the most among active female players — means Serena, currently 181st in the WTA rankings, will return to the top 100 next week.
Williams had made a tentative return to action following complications during daughter Olympia’s birth, struggling in her few appearances before pulling out midway through the recent French Open with a pectoral injury.
But her blistering form and a series of shock results have paved the way for another Williams coronation at Wimbledon.
Garbine Muguruza, Maria Sharapova, Simona Halep, Petra Kvitova, Venus Williams, Caroline Wozniacki and Sloane Stephens have all been eliminated already. It is the first time in Wimbledon history not one of the top 10 women’s seeds have reached the quarter-finals.
Serena seeded 25th, was facing a fellow mother in Rodina, the world number 120 who calls the American her “idol”. And it was child’s play on Centre Court for Williams, who hit 30 winners and served 10 aces.
Twenty years after making her Wimbledon debut, Williams looks as good as ever and she moves into the quarter-finals without dropping a set in her first four matches.
Serena needs to win three more matches to earn the 24th Grand Slam singles title of her career, a mark which would tie current record holder Margaret Court.
(With Agency Inputs)