Federer sees off Ferrer


A closely-fought final match of the last eight was ultimately decided by the continual double-fault errors from Spaniard Ferrer, who offended seven times to the Swiss player's zero.

One break of the fifth seed's serve was enough to bring Federer's record over Ferrer to 13-0, and eliminate the last remaining hope of a home nation winner on the blue clay court.

Federer can inflict further misery on Spanish tennis if he goes on to win the tournament, an accomplishment which would see him overtake Rafael Nadal as second seed in the rankings.

Federer, the 2009 champion, has adapted to the conditions of the much-maligned blue clay more effectively than the top two players and cruised to the win.

Watched by Real Madrid players including Cristiano Ronaldo and Xabi Alonso, the 16-times Grand Slam singles champion sealed a 6-4 6-4 victory with his seventh ace as he continued the pursuit of his fourth title this year.

Asked if he was the new title favourite following the exits of Djokovic and Nadal, Federer said: "Maybe. I have won it in the past so you figure as a player you can do it again.

"But all the other guys are highly ranked as well and can definitely run through the next couple of rounds so I am aware of that too," the 30-year-old added.

"I haven't played Janko that often so I don't quite know his game that well, like I know David's game for instance or Novak's or Rafa's.

"We'll see how that goes first and I hope I have a shot at the title on Sunday but obviously my focus is on Tipsarevic right now," said Federer.

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