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
Professor David Nutt wants to change the way gravely ill patients are treated in Britain
people Why does a former Government tsar believe that mind-altering drugs have a place on prescription?
News
Norway’s ‘The Nordland Line – Minute by Minute, Season by Season’ continues the trend of slow TV
television The BBC have commissioned a series of programmes doing away with high-production values, commentary, script or drama
Arts and Entertainment
art
Sport
Jonny Evans has pleaded not guilty to an FA charge for spitting at Papiss Cisse
football
Life and Style
Kate Moss will make a cameo appearance in David Walliams' The Boy in the Dress
fashion
News
The image released by the Salvation Army, using 'The Dress'
news
Sport
Liverpool defender Kolo Toure
football Defender could make history in the FA Cup, but African Cup of Nations win means he's already content
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.

Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable