Roger Federer showcased his incomparable grass court skills on Thursday in a serene straight-sets win over Sam Querrey at Wimbledon.
The seven-time champion marched into Round 3 after beating the American 6-4, 6-2, 6-2, enchanting the Centre Court with his sophisticated but devastatingly effective skill set. Federer will play Sam Groth in the next round.
Facing someone as iconic as the Swiss at a historic venue like Centre Court is often enough to make some players go into their shell. But credit must go to Querrey, who began this match with an evident authority.
The American didn’t lose a single point on his service until the fifth game of the match. But the experienced Federer kept Querrey at bay, and as that early fizz from his opponent began to abate, he started to take control. At 4-4 on the American’s serve, Federer seized a break point at the fourth opportunity with a mesmeric backhand, before going on to clinch the set 6-4.
As noted by Live Tennis, Federer knew the break was an important moment in the match:
BREAK: A big roar from Federer as he pounces superbly to gain a crucial break of serve and move 5-4 up! #Wimbledon
— Live Tennis (@livetennis) July 2, 2015
Indeed, he settled into a stunning rhythm from that point on. The Swiss superstar broke in the very first game of the second stanza, his slick backhand once again doing the damage. From there, Federer played a practically flawless set of tennis. The manner in which the 33-year-old glided around the court stoked memories of Roger’s first Wimbledon win 12 years ago. He certainly looked just as agile, as we can see here with this disgustingly audacious lob midway through the second set, per Tennis.com’s Ed McGrogan:
Pulling out party tricks like that, it was no surprise the Swiss went on to clinch the set 6-2, and somewhat ominously for the American, this match was starting to become increasingly lopsided in favour of the 17-time Grand Slam champion.
Even though there was that familiar look of steely determination etched on his face throughout the match, Federer seemed as though he was thriving off the energy of the Centre Court crowd, who in turn were utterly bewitched by some of his mesmerising play.
Christopher Clarey was also in awe of the second seed:
Man, #Federer is hitting the ball cleanly
— Christopher Clarey (@christophclarey) July 2, 2015
Afterward, as you might expect, Federer was asked about that tremendous lob in the second set. Wimbledon provided his response:
— Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 2, 2015
Although a clinic in grass court tennis from Andy Murray earlier in the day got pulses racing at SW19, this win from Federer represents the standout performance of the week so far. The second seed moved through the gears with purpose and panache on Centre Court, completely nullifying a dangerous opponent with an arsenal of positive attributes.
Groth will be another testing tie for Roger, but if he can replicate these kinds of standards, it’s tough to see the Australian, or any man in the field for that matter, living with the mercurial Swiss.