Wimbledon, England (Sports Network) - Wimbledon champion Roger Federer,
former Wimbledon titlist Novak Djokovic and last month's runner-up at the All
England Club Andy Murray secured berths in the quarterfinals at the London
Olympics tennis event on Wednesday.
The world No. 1 Federer was tested in the first set en route to a 7-5, 6-3
third-round victory over Uzbekistan's Denis Istomin on Court 1 in this London
suburb, where the Swiss icon has captured seven Wimbledon championships,
including his most-recent one just four weeks ago. The match was interrupted
by rain, with the score tied at 5-all in the first set.
Federer moved on in 81 minutes despite committing an uncharacteristic 24
unforced errors over two sets. The Swiss great, however, was broken only once
en route to the predictable victory.
The 30-year-old Federer would complete a career "Golden Slam" with a gold-
medal performance this week.
Federer's quarterfinal opponent will be 10th-seeded 6-foot-9 American John
Isner, who launched 22 aces in upsetting seventh-seeded Serb Janko Tipsarevic
7-5, 7-6 (16-14). Isner shocked Federer in a Davis Cup match in Switzerland
back in February.
The amazing Federer will not repeat as an Olympic doubles champion, however,
as he and Swiss partner Stan Wawrinka, slotted as the sixth seeds, suffered a
1-6, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3 second-round loss Wednesday at the hands of unseeded
Israelis Jonathan Erlich and Andy Ram. Federer and Wawrinka combined to
capture gold in Beijing in 2008.
The second-seeded Djokovic, who recently lost the No. 1 ranking to Federer,
needed all three sets to stave off former top-ranked star Lleyton Hewitt of
Australia, 4-6, 7-5, 6-1. The reigning Australian and U.S. Open champion
fired 16 aces before getting past Hewitt, who captured a Wimbledon title
himself back in 2002.
Djokovic advanced in just under two hours by breaking Hewitt four times,
compared to two breaks for the Aussie veteran.
The 25-year-old Djokovic, a bronze medalist in Beijing four years ago, will
battle fifth-seeded marathon man Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France in the quarters.
The third-seeded Wimbledon runner-up Murray dropped the first set before
fighting back to beat Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 on Centre Court,
where the Brit lost to Federer in last month's Wimbledon finale.
Murray needed just under two hours to stave off the former Aussie Open runner-
up Baghdatis. The crowd favorite popped 13 aces and won 96 percent of his
second serves on Day 5.
Next up for the Dunblane, Scotland native Murray will be sweet-swinging
Spaniard Nicolas Almagro.
One day after outlasting Canadian Milos Raonic in the longest-ever Olympic
tennis match, the fifth-seeded Tsonga had an easier time of it in a 7-6 (7-5),
6-4 victory over Spanish left-hander Feliciano Lopez on Wednesday.
Tsonga got past Raonic in an epic 48-game third set here on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, eighth-seeded Argentine slugger Juan Martin del Potro defeated
12th-seeded Frenchman Gilles Simon 6-1, 4-6, 6-3 and an 11th-seeded Almagro
handled Belgian Steve Darcis 7-5, 6-3. Del Potro captured a U.S. Open title in
2009 by stunning Federer in the final in New York.
The Sports Network