Wednesday, 24 April, 2019

Wimbledon 2018: Shell-shocked Roger Federer explains his defeat

Roger Federer Rafael Nadal Wimbledon GETTYRoger Federer Rafael Nadal has admitted he does not want a Wimbledon final showdown
Cary Erickson | 12 July, 2018, 06:10

Even if Federer had managed to get past Anderson, as he nearly did, having held match point in the third set, there was no guarantee he would have gone on to win the title, especially with a rejuvenated Novak Djokovic in the other half of the draw, not to mention Rafael Nadal and Juan Martín del Potro.

"I think the first warning was unnecessary", said Djokovic, who was sanctioned in the second set for spearing his racquet into the court. "I don't know how long it's going to take me [to get over it]" he said.

In the fourth set, he was two points from victory but couldn't capitalize and dropped the fifth with barely a fight.

Only once before had Federer played more games at a Grand Slam and on that occasion, he prevailed 16-14 in the 2009 Wimbledon final against Andy Roddick. When Nishikori let his own racket fly in the fourth set, he wasn't chastised, which prompted Djokovic to yell "double standards" toward Ramos - drawing boos from fans. "I felt like I did some good business here in the past already", he said.

Anderson, meanwhile, is coming off a four-set win over Gael Monfils that saw three of those sets go to a tiebreaker.

'I was glad and grateful to be scheduled today on the Centre Court, playing first match.

Anderson scented blood and, out-duelling Federer time and again, he broke in the 7th game to level the match at two sets all.

Djokovic has got his wish as he will take on the world number 24 Kei Nishikori on Centre Court, while Federer will take on Anderson on court number one.

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There's nothing really that shocked me because I've seen Kevin play many, many times in the past.

Yet once he had ended Federer's run of holding serve for 85 consecutive games - a streak dating back to last year's semi-final - Anderson's confidence soared.

Kevin Anderson dethroned Roger Federer to reach his maiden Wimbledon semi-final after sealing a dramatic 13-11 deciding-set victory on Wednesday. I gave it my all.

"Sure, it's disappointing losing the next two sets after winning the first two and having match points".

With things on serve and Federer leading 5-4, Anderson survived a match point to hold serve for 5-5 then broke immediately and served out the set, winning it 7-5.

But he found himself in even more unfamiliar territory with an inspired Anderson's relentless, thudding serve eventually overpowering the 20-time grand slam victor. The 6-foot-8 Anderson wasn't broken in the final three sets. The South African made no mistake. Then in the 23rd game, at 11-all, 30-30 Federer blinked, sending down a double-fault and then drove a forehand into the net to allow his giant opponent to serve for a place in the semifinals. The 37-year-old vows to be back. "Obviously I've been very pleased with the way I've played so far on the grass court season".

"It feels great to be in the last four of a slam", Djokovic said on the BBC.

"I didn't feel mental fatigue".