Roger Federer had to dig deep to win a pair of tiebreaks but Svetlana Kuznetsova was not so lucky as the women’s top seed was sent crashing out of the ATP and WTA Sony Ericsson Open on Monday.
Reigning Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon champ Federer swept past France’s Florent Serra 7-6 (7/2), 7-6 (7/3) in a third round match.
Serra made top seed Federer work for the win as the Swiss star had his service broken three times and he made two costly double-faults. Federer also committed 35 unforced errors to 32 for Serra.
But Federer closed out the win with a service winner as he played well in both tiebreakers on the hardcourts at Crandon Park. “All in all, I’m thrilled to be through,” Federer said. “At the end of the day, that’s what counts.”
Watching from the stands on Monday was Spaniard Rafael Nadal, who could meet Federer in Sunday’s final. “It has always been a lot of fun playing against him,” Federer said. “I hope that day is going to come soon again.”
Federer won the Key Biscayne title in 2005 and 2006. His 36 career victories in the event is third behind Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi.