Federer feeling the pressure in Paris

Roger Federer admits the pressure of winning a first French Open title is weighing on his mind.

The Swiss star beat Frenchman Gael Monfils in straight sets yesterday to move into the semi-finals at Roland Garros, where he will meet fifth seed Juan Martin del Potro.



Such is the clamour for Federer, the second seed, to clinch the one grand-slam crown missing on his CV that he revealed he is being stopped at traffic lights by fans wishing him good luck.



The crowds at Roland Garros are also pulling for him, to such an extent that you could not tell who the French player was during his match with Monfils on Philippe Chatrier court.



But Federer, who has seen main rivals Rafael Nadal, Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic dumped out early, admits it is not just a question of external pressure as he closes in on greatness.



"We're all nervous at this stage - I felt it in the warm-up. I was tired, I was nervous and I didn't really feel good," the 27-year-old said after his convincing win over Monfils.



"The whole story of Nadal losing, Murray losing, Djokovic losing, the draw opening up a little bit; it obviously plays with your mind.



"But it doesn't matter if I'm zero nervous or 100 per cent nervous. I know I'll always play a decent match in the quarter-finals of a grand slam."



He did just that, easing past 11th seed Monfils to reach his 20th consecutive grand-slam semi-final.



It was a much-improved performance compared to his fourth-round display against Tommy Haas, when he was forced to come from two sets down to squeeze into the last eight.



"For the first time, I could play a bit more relaxed," he added.



"I was able to hit through the ball more. Everything just started to click."



Argentina's Del Potro was a 6-3 6-4 6-2 winner over 16th seed Tommy Robredo in yesterday's other quarter-final.



Robin Soderling meets Fernando Gonzalez in the semi-final from the top half of the draw.



The women's semi-finals take place today, with top seed and world number one Dinara Safina coming up against 20th seed Dominika Cibulkova and seventh seed Svetlana Kuznetsova clashing with Sam Stosur, the 30th seed.



BUY WIMBLEDON TICKETS

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Turkey-Kurdish conflict: Obama's deal with Ankara is a betrayal of Syrian Kurds and may not even weaken Isis

US betrayal of old ally brings limited reward

Since the accord, the Turks have only waged war on Kurds while no US bomber has used Incirlik airbase, says Patrick Cockburn
VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but doubts linger over security

'A gift from Egypt to the rest of the world'

VIPs gather for opening of second Suez Canal - but is it really needed?
Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Jeremy Corbyn dresses abysmally. That's a great thing because it's genuine

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, applauds a man who clearly has more important things on his mind
The male menopause and intimations of mortality

Aches, pains and an inkling of mortality

So the male menopause is real, they say, but what would the Victorians, 'old' at 30, think of that, asks DJ Taylor
Man Booker Prize 2015: Anna Smaill - How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?

'How can I possibly be on the list with these writers I have idolised?'

Man Booker Prize nominee Anna Smaill on the rise of Kiwi lit
Bettany Hughes interview: The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems

Bettany Hughes interview

The historian on how Socrates would have solved Greece's problems
Art of the state: Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China

Art of the state

Pyongyang propaganda posters to be exhibited in China
Mildreds and Vanilla Black have given vegetarian food a makeover in new cookbooks

Vegetarian food gets a makeover

Long-time vegetarian Holly Williams tries to recreate some of the inventive recipes in Mildreds and Vanilla Black's new cookbooks
The haunting of Shirley Jackson: Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?

The haunting of Shirley Jackson

Was the gothic author's life really as bleak as her fiction?
Bill Granger recipes: Heading off on holiday? Try out our chef's seaside-inspired dishes...

Bill Granger's seaside-inspired recipes

These dishes are so easy to make, our chef is almost embarrassed to call them recipes
Ashes 2015: Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

Tourists are limp, leaderless and distinctly UnAustralian

A woefully out-of-form Michael Clarke embodies his team's fragile Ashes campaign, says Michael Calvin
Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza

Andrew Grice: Inside Westminster

Blairites be warned, this could be the moment Labour turns into Syriza
HMS Victory: The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

The mystery of Britain's worst naval disaster is finally solved - 271 years later

Exclusive: David Keys reveals the research that finally explains why HMS Victory went down with the loss of 1,100 lives
Survivors of the Nagasaki atomic bomb attack: Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism

'I saw people so injured you couldn't tell if they were dead or alive'

Nagasaki survivors on why Japan must not abandon its post-war pacifism
Jon Stewart: The voice of Democrats who felt Obama had failed to deliver on his 'Yes We Can' slogan, and the voter he tried hardest to keep onside

The voter Obama tried hardest to keep onside

Outgoing The Daily Show host, Jon Stewart, became the voice of Democrats who felt the President had failed to deliver on his ‘Yes We Can’ slogan. Tim Walker charts the ups and downs of their 10-year relationship on screen