Wimbledon 2014: Roger Federer remains on course for eighth title after victory over compatriot Stan Wawrinka

The seven-time champion beat his fellow Swiss 3-6, 7-6, 6-4, 6-4 to reach the semi-finals

Wimbledon

Roger Federer's quest for a record-breaking eighth Wimbledon title continues apace after victory in the Swiss derby on Centre Court, where Basle defeated Lausanne 3-6, 7-6, 6-4, 6-4. Friday's semi-final will be Federer's third match in four days, but playing for the third time on successive days caught up with his compatriot Stan Wawrinka, who had complained in vain about the scheduling after his third round match was held over from Saturday to Monday because of rain.

Seeking medical assistance after losing the second set, he never looked himself again and was playing from memory by the time he managed to save four match points but not a fifth.

Davis Cup team-mates and Olympic gold medallists together they may be, but until losing energy, Wawrinka was in no mood to defer to the older man, whom he overtook as Swiss No 1 after winning the Australian Open in January. Having beaten Federer in their most recent meeting in Monte Carlo this year encouraged his self-belief too, even if it left him 13-2 behind on head-to-heads.

That was carried into the first set, won in only half an hour and it was just one mistake that cost him the second in the tiebreak. At that stage Wawrinka called for assistance and took some pills for an unspecified ailment after which he began to look a little more sluggish. By the time they took effect the third set had gone and the fourth also required only one decisive break of serve.

“Stan played great, especially in the first two sets, then started to struggle,” Federer said. “He was hitting the ball too cleanly for me to do anything with it. I don't want to get too far ahead of myself but it's good to be back in the semi-final.” He has played eight at Wimbledon and not lost one yet.

If the Federer backhand is a thing of beauty, Wawrinka's, also single-handed, is a bludgeon that he employed to powerful effect. If anything was going to let Wawrinka down it was a first serve that hit the spot barely 50 per cent of the time. Considering that, Federer was able to force few break points for a long time. In the first set he was allowed only one, failing to take it after having fallen behind to a break in only the fourth game. A smash from Wawrinka after Federer tried to lob him brought three set points, the second of which was gleefully accepted.

It meant Federer had dropped a set for the first time here this year and he was in no mood to do so again. Serving first this time, the former champion was able to hold comfortably and theoretically keep the pressure on, although without coming close more than once to a break.

So a tiebreak it was, in which one crucial mistake by Wawrinka, sending a forehand too long, allowed his opponent to serve and volley for 7-5 and equality.

In the third set Wawrinka's service games became more erratic and after saving two break points at 1-1, he failed to do so at 3-3. For the first time in the match the senior man was on top and again the shot to seal the set was an emphatic one, smashed from overhead.

Federer, merciless, kept him running from side to side, up and back and made the break early for a 2-1 lead, quickly extended and eventually consolidated to earn yet another Grand Slam semi-final. It will be his 35th, easily a record, and only Jimmy Connors has won more matches here (84-72).

He will be favourite to be walking out for Sunday's final against either Novak Djokovic or Grigor Dimitrov, which would enable him to reclaim his position as Swiss No 1 and put Wawrinka in his place for the second time in a week.

News
peoplePaper attempts to defend itself
Voices
voicesWe desperately need men to be feminists too
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
British actor Idris Elba is also a DJ and rapper who played Ibiza last summer
film
PROMOTED VIDEO
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Syria air strikes: ‘Peace President’ Obama had to take stronger action against Isis after beheadings

Robert Fisk on Syria air strikes

‘Peace President’ Obama had to take stronger action against Isis after beheadings
Will Lindsay Lohan's West End debut be a turnaround moment for her career?

Lindsay Lohan's West End debut

Will this be a turnaround moment for her career?
'The Crocodile Under the Bed': Judith Kerr's follow-up to 'The Tiger Who Came to Tea'

The follow-up to 'The Tiger Who Came to Tea'

Judith Kerr on what inspired her latest animal intruder - 'The Crocodile Under the Bed' - which has taken 46 years to get into print
BBC Television Centre: A nostalgic wander through the sets, studios and ghosts of programmes past

BBC Television Centre

A nostalgic wander through the sets, studios and ghosts of programmes past
Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum