Tsonga stings Federer blue
Roger Federer's dreams of a seventh Wimbledon title were shattered by an extraordinary comeback from Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga who won an epic quarter-final 3-6, 6-7 (3), 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 on Wednesday.sports Updated: Jun 30, 2011 01:13 IST
Roger Federer's dreams of a seventh Wimbledon title were shattered by an extraordinary comeback from Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga who won an epic quarter-final 3-6, 6-7 (3), 6-4, 6-4, 6-4 on Wednesday.
It was the first time the third seed has lost a Grand Slam match having been two sets up and it condemned the 16-times major champion to a second Wimbledon quarter-final exit in a row.
"It was just amazing today, I played unbelievable, everything was in," Tsonga said.
"That's crazy, he is the biggest champion in my sport, he achieved a lot of things. He is the best player in the world and I'm just so happy to beat him, especially on grass as it is one of his best surfaces."
Federer, bidding for a record-equalling seventh title, glided through the first set and never looked in danger in the second set or tiebreak as Tsonga showed few signs that he was capable of making a scrap of it.
However, the 12th seed soon found his groove with his immense energy and athleticism suddenly worrying Federer, who was dumped out by Tomas Berdych at the same stage last year.
Tsonga broke for 2-1 in the third and fourth sets and held out thanks to some rasping groundstrokes and trademark volleys.
Federer could do nothing to halt Tsonga's momentum with the Frenchman piling into every stroke with all his might to reach a third Grand Slam semi and set up a meeting with Novak Djokovic on Friday.
"I think Jo played great from start to finish, I don't remember a break point after the first game," Federer told a news conference.
"Except the score, many, many things went right. I'm pretty pleased with my performance, it's hard going out of the tournament that way. I think he played an amazing match, he didn't give me many chances."
One of the keys to Federer's incredible success over the years has been his coolness under pressure but it was his very lack of emotion as the match began to slip away which seemed to be his undoing.
When other players would have slammed the racket against the ground or screamed at themselves to snap out of their malaise, the 29-year-old passively continued to play the same way despite desperately needing a break.
In contrast, Tsonga looked a beaten man at the end of the second set but somehow found a second wind with the Centre Court crowd urging him on despite their attachment to Federer.
Djokovic keeps cool
A subdued Djokovic ended the dream run of 18-year-old Australian Bernard Tomic with a 6-2 3-6 6-3 7-5 victory.
"I'm delighted to be through it's a great result but was a very even match," Djokovic said.
"I played very well to start with but I played one very bad service game and he got back into the match and from that moment on he was the better player."
Nadal v Murray
Top seed and defending champion Rafael Nadal reached the semis with a 6-3, 6-3, 5-7, 6-4 win over America's Mardy Fish. Nadal will tackle British fourth seed Andy Murray on Friday for a place in the final, who got the better of Feliciano Lopez6-3, 6-4, 6-4.