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|Nationality||Player||Set 1||Set 2||Set 3||Set 4||Set 5|
16:15 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 6-4 3-6. GULBIS. MATCH! Cool as you like, Gulbis smashes down an ace to send himself up double match point, before another wayward Federer backhand seals it all off. Despite his fourth-set holiday, a top quality performance from the Latvian and a massive upset.
16:11 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 6-4 3-5. GULBIS. Federer wastes no time in holding serve with a cool service game, smashing down an unreturned serve to end and dispatching his spare ball to the other side. Over to Gulbis.
16:08 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 6-4 2-5 GULBIS. As the match builds to an almighty climax, the game begins with an epic as the pair trade blows from the back of the court before Gulbis’ volley just floats wide. A backhand winner dispatched pancake-flat and drilled straight down the line, a perfectly angled Federer backhand smash. Gulbis finally shuts the door by spanking another forehand followed by a delicate little dropshot to move within one game of his greatest victory.
16:02 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 6-4 2-4 GULBIS. Federer responds by launching to the net and pulling off some physics defying coverage of the fort before slicing his racquet into a sickly sweet drop volley. The rest is business, and he’s soon back in pursuit of Gulbis’ serve.
16:00 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 6-4 1-4 GULBIS. It’s the same ol’, same ol’ for Gulbis. He abuses a few more backhands, most notably fully rotating on one that flies crosscourt for a glorious winner. Then he spanks down a few more winning first serves and struts to his chair with another game safely tucked away in his pocket.
15:57 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 6-4 1-3 GULBIS. At last, Federer puts his name on the 5th set board after a quick service game of his own. A couple of big forehands seal the game, and off he goes again in search of that vital break.
15:53 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 6-4 0-3 GULBIS. Gulbis’ 12th ace comes firing down, but as usual it’s the unreturned serves that account for most of his service points. Infused with violent backhands, more fly his way as he rushes towards game point. When Federer finally manages to land himself in a point, he slaps a backhand into the bottom of the net.
15:49 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 6-4 0-2 GULBIS. BREAK! Gulbis infuses his play with a little mystery slinking to the net behind a slice and dispatching a confident volley to bring up an ominous 0-30 lead in Federer’s very first service game. The mystery continues as three break points fall his way. After saving two break points, a solid return from Gulbis is enough to send Federer into a muddle as he mistimes a forehand. A crucial break?
15:46 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 6-4 0-1 GULBIS. Gulbis wipes away the lost set and holds at the beginning of the fifth, sending a backhand screaming straight down the line like in the good old days when he was snatching the second set with ease.
15:40 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 6-4 GULBIS. SET! More ballbashing from Gulbis sends Federer into an ominous 0-30 hole, but the Swiss fends off two more lob-attempts from his serial lobbing opponent. The recovery is completed with a formidable serve complimented with a sliding forehand winner to capture the hold and push the match into a deciding fifth set.
15:34 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 5-4 GULBIS. Gulbis’ energized return continues as he rolls up his sleeves and duly holds with ease to tear through his service game love. Plenty for Federer to think about as he returns to serve for the fourth set.
15:31 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 5-3 GULBIS. BREAK! After the lengthy break, Gulbis returns to the court and proceeds to pulverize the heck out of the ball. Soon enough, one of the two breaks are recovered and Federer is left feeling a little hard done by with his momentum lying in tatters on the dirty, red clay.
15:23 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 5-2 GULBIS. BREAK! The break is doubled as the errors reel off Gulbis’ racquet and the rest of his resistance crumbles in an instance. He quickly calls out the trainer as the pair sit down, and off the court he goes for a medical timeout.
15:20 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 4-2 GULBIS. Federer is not one to reject free gifts, and he swiftly holds to consolidate the break with a series of wrong-footing forehands followed by yet more unreturned serves. Clear daylight now stands between the two in this fourth set.
15:15 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 3-2 GULBIS. BREAK! Another low-key start has galvanized Gulbis into amusing himself. He sends a forehand dropshot well wide, and responds to the lost point with a backhand dropshot that dies on the red clay. On the next point, he slinks up to the net unannounced, and sends a stretch volley wide. After saving the resulting break point, a second comes soon after and a backhand clips the net and flies out. Out of nowhere, the Latvian is a break down.
15:08 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 2-2 GULBIS. Federer too finds his way to a quick 40-0, only to concede two silly points himself. But a rasping wrong footing forehand winner sends him on his way again.
15:04 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 1-2 GULBIS. Another game destined for another serve-dominated love-hold is derailed by two distracted errors from Gulbis, but he quickly rights those wrongs on his third try with the trusty brutal backhand cross-court.
15:01 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 1-1 GULBIS. Back we go to the familiar sight of the pair sizing each other up as Federer throws down a quick, big serve-dominated love hold to level it up.
14:59 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 0-1 GULBIS. It takes Gulbis little time to open his fourth-set account. More serves that go unreturned and more brutal, deep backhands straight to Federer’s weaker backhand side are enough to force his way through.
14:54 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-6 GULBIS. SET! Well, that escalated quickly. Federer stomps off-court after limply conceding the set with two uninterested forehand errors. The match is falling away from the 2009 champion fast, and he needs to rediscover his fight if he doesn’t want it to be his last.
14:49 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-5 GULBIS. Gulbis seems to be enjoying himself out there. After being burned by a poor forehand slice, he responds not with pragmatism. Instead, out comes a winning forehand dropshot and two backhand dropshots in succession to seal the game with style.
14:45 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-4 GULBIS. BREAK! After yet another flawless Gulbis lob on game point, Federer deems it time to bring out his trusty tweener, but it isn’t enough to win the game. The pair descend once more into deuce to which Federer responds with some rasping forehands to move to game point again. Three points later, all hope is dashed as three elementary backhand errors easily concede the break.
14:39 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-3 GULBIS. Gulbis’ sly attempt at his trademark dropshot fails, but Federer repays the favour by sending a forehand flying long. A ninth ace comes for Gulbis, and Federer with a perfectly-timed turn winner that leaves Gulbis just as helpless. But as quickly as Federer makes his way into a Gulbis service game, he dumps a backhand into the net and a wrong-footing forehand winner from the Latvian is enough to seal a hold.
14:33 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 2-2 GULBIS. A quick serve and forehand one-two seals another game for Federer as rallies shorten once more and the pair are back to cautiously sizing up the other.
14:29 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 1-2 GULBIS. A rapid love game follows for a Gulbis now busting from the seams with confidence and a frowning understanding of what he has to do. He struts to his chair after sealing it with an ace.
14:28 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 1-1 GULBIS. A couple of big serves, a couple of strong forehands and the monotony of holding serve resumes for both men.
14:25 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) 0-1 GULBIS. Gulbis ain’t letting his momentum go, and after painting more lines with that smooth yet horrendously brutal backhand, he eases through the first hold of a new set.
14:22 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-7(3) GULBIS. SET! Gulbis completes his comeback from double set point down by stealing the set. After Gulbis stole the first minibreak with a sickly sweet dropshot, Federer roared to move to a 3-2 lead. Little did he know, it would be the last point he won in the tiebreak as another barrage of violent backhands drove a resilient Gulbis to the second set finishing line. All square once more on Chatrier.
14:14 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-6 GULBIS. After the lazy, serve-dominated start, the intensity is suddenly breathtaking. Gulbis fires down a few trademark big serves, but there are now long points with attack and defence. The massive hitting continues on game points where Gulbis can’t find the perfect passing shot after a long rally. A couple of great backhands though, and we’re off to another tiebreak.
14:10 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 6-5 GULBIS. Drama! After two poor Federer errors, the pair trade a scintillating point at 15-30 which ends with Federer playing a great backhand smash but moving back and still losing the point. A snatched return scuppers the first break point, a backhand error after perfectly setting up the opening takes away the second, to which Gulbis responds by smashing the heck out of his racquet with his foot! Needless to say, the game falls Federer’s way after that.
14:03 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 5-5. It doesn’t take too long for Gulbis to level things up. He dispatches a few more of his big serves, and finishes it off by pounding a backhand straight down the line, and cleaning up the short ball with another backhand to the opposite corner.
14:01 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 5-4. BREAK! Federer thought he had it all done, up double set point with a sitter of a smash, but Gulbis guesses the correct way and responds with a perfectly redirected backhand straight down the line into the open court. This buoys Gulbis into action once more, as brutish deep hitting forces away the second game point and lands him a game point on his own. In Federer’s attempt to steal back the initiative, a well-struck forehand rebounds against the tape, and we’re back on serve
13:56 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 5-3. BREAK! A forehand error sends Gulbis hunching over in despair, and for good reason as he falls down a looming 0-30. Two points later a backhand flies out, one point later he slides into a forehand volley and the forehand volley slides well wide. It suddenly is looking all a bit gloomy for Mr Gulbis.
13:51 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 4-3. Federer picks up yet another rapid hold. More good serves, and an uncharacteristically dominant backhand put his nose narrowly back into the lead.
13:49 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 3-3 GULBIS. Showing off, Gulbis sticks another perfectly-measured lob over Federer’s head and combines it with a brutish ace. He’s in the zone until he isn’t as a double fault follows. But he seals it off a point later, out manoeuvring the fourth seed from the baseline to hold.
13:43 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 3-2 GULBIS. Federer flies to 40-0 himself, levelling Gulbis’ ace count at 4 in the process. A smooth Gulbis lob sails over his head and just catches the back of the baseline, but a strong serve seals up another game.
13:41 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 2-2 GULBIS. Gulbis flies to 40-0 with a load of big serves, before going walkabouts for a few points and absentmindedly committing elementary errors. But he holds eventually, sealing the third with an ace.
13:37 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 2-1 GULBIS. Despite it being Gulbis’ undoubted strength, Federer has set his sights on breaking down Gulbis’ backhand and he won’t let up. Pulverizing forehands and brutal serves alike are sent to that one stroke alone and soon Federer is strolling back to his seat, another love hold pocketed.
13:35 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 1-1 GULBIS. BREAK! A double fault sends Gulbis muttering once more. “First serve is 20%!” he yells to his box, a slight exaggeration. Much like in set one, Federer finds himself with two points to immediately break back. A variety of topspin and slice backhands are enough to draw out an error from Gulbis’ own strength and establish parity once more.
13:31 - FEDERER 7-6(5) 0-1 GULBIS. BREAK! It doesn’t take long for Gulbis to recover from the first set. Up double game point, Federer suddenly plays a couple of loose errors. Gulbis needs no further invitation, powering a forehand before drilling a brute of a backhand arrow-straight down the line.
13:26 - FEDERER 7-6(5) GULBIS. SET! Brilliant from Federer! He perfectly angles a gorgeous forehand passing shot past Gulbis to seal up the set with aplomb. Some choice expletives that can’t be repeated here preceded the point from Gulbis, who found himself up 5-3 only to dump a forehand into the net and relinquish three more points in succession. Gulbis seemed to hold the upper hand all set, but it’s Federer who snatches it at its bitter end.
13:19 - FEDERER 6-6 (3-3) GULBIS. Oof. A rapid cat-and-mouse point early in the tiebreak ends with Federer chasing back a lob, and simultaneously turning as he dispatches a forehand winner past a net-bound Gulbis. It seems they have saved their best for last as Federer’s following forehand winner is cancelled by a confident volley winner from Gulbis. The pair cross sides locked at 3-3 in the first set.
13:16 - FEDERER 6-6 GULBIS. It takes Federer no time at all to level the match and force a tiebreak. More big serves followed by a slick serve and volley, and it’s time to settle this set once and for all.
13:13 - FEDERER 5-6 GULBIS. As Federer prowls the net and Gulbis produces two errors in succession, the precarious score of 30-30 forces out Gulbis’ most inspired play of the match so far. A swashbuckling heavy forehand crosscourt captures the first point, then the contrast of a delicate volley seals the game. Despite his wild-haired and unshaven appearance, some tidy play from the Latvian challenger.
13:09 - FEDERER 5-5 GULBIS. On game point, Federer uncorks a comical smash that ended up bouncing closer to him than to the net. Another deuce game beckons, but this time some punishing forehands followed by another unreturned serve allow him to escape without too many problems.
13:04 - FEDERER 4-5 GULBIS. Gulbis will be wondering why he couldn’t do this a game earlier as he fires down a series of unreturned serves and struts to his chair in the lead once more. Federer’s returning not quite good enough.
13:01 - FEDERER 4-4 GULBIS. Federer gets the break back, only to generously give Gulbis a 0-30 chance of breaking back again. A series of big serves see him recover, before he once again descends into a giving mood and dumps a sorry attempt at a dropshot straight into the net. But a big serve straight down the T and some formidable forehands seal a game and level the first set.
12:57 - FEDERER 3-4 GULBIS. BREAK! Whoops! Gulbis cruises to 30-15, only to dump one backhand into the net, another flying for the back fence which caused Federer to jump out of the way, and a final forehand well wide to offer back the break. Not exactly the best ever attempt at consolidating a break.
12:52 - FEDERER 2-4 GULBIS. BREAK! Gulbis powers down his first thunderous return, a forehand return winner screaming past an unmoved Federer. Federer responds with a quick serve-forehand 1-2 punch, but two consecutive errors offer Gulbis his first break point. After working Federer’s backhand for an age, the Swiss finally snaps and sends a backhand flying well long.
12:47 - FEDERER 2-3 GULBIS. Gulbis loves his dropshots, and his first works quite well until, with a scrambling Federer standing helplessly at the net, he hooks his favoured backhand just wide. He too finds himself down 15-30, but two massive wide serves sandwiched between a mistimed forehand from Federer seals another game.
12:43 - FEDERER 2-2 GULBIS. As the game of one-upmanship continues, a Federer forehand hooked well wide offers Gulbis the first slight opening at 15-30, but the Latvian responds with two netted forehands on his own to offer the favourite a game point instead. He duly glides to his right and uncorks his trademark inside-out forehand for his second hold.
12:39 - FEDERER 1-2 GULBIS. The stats board pops up with 5 unforced errors for Federer as a forehand flies into the net. As the pair continue to size each other up in the opening stages, Gulbis cruises to a love hold of his own.
12:37 - FEDERER 1-1 GULBIS. With typical efficiency, Federer responds shortly after with a hold to love. A sweet serve and volley up 30-0 the centrepiece of a hold similarly dominated by rasping first serves.
12:33 - FEDERER 0-1 GULBIS. Match underway and first blood to Gulbis, who lines up his serve and fires down a couple of big ones to send him on his way with an easy hold.
12:17 - Hello! Up next on Chatrier is the intriguing contest between Roger Federer and the endlessly extroverted Ernests Gulbis. As always, the talented Latvian is talking the talk and claims to have a plan for the GOAT. We'll soon see if it is the correct one.
|Date of Birth||30/08/1988|
|Date of Birth||08/08/1981|