Federer stunned by Tsonga fightback

LONDON, (Reuters) – 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 6-4 6-4 6-4 today.
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 in a televised interview.
“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.
His raw power threatened to completely stifle Federer, who  failed to raise his game and slipped a break down at the start  of the fifth set when he netted.
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.
The Frenchman loves to dive around on the grass and his  entertainment value meant the fans, including golf great Jack  Nicklaus, were enthralled by his stunning comeback.
“I thought my game was plenty good enough to win the  tournament,” Federer said, indicating his will carry on fighting  despite not winning a grand slam since the 2010 Australian Open.

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