• Wimbledon, Day Eight

Federer battles injury to fend off Malisse

ESPN staff
July 2, 2012

ESPN will be providing extensive coverage of Wimbledon in association with Rolex, with live scores, commentary and analysis and you can follow it all with our live scorecentre

Roger Federer survived an injury scare to reach his 33rd consecutive grand slam quarter-final as he saw off Xavier Malisse in four sets at Wimbledon.

The world No. 3 appeared to be in some trouble when he left the court for treatment deep into the opening set, but despite struggling with his movement, held on to claim a 7-6(1) 6-1 4-6 6-3 victory.

The 16-time grand slam champion, who had to come from two sets to love down to defeat Julien Benneteau on Friday, appeared to be in some discomfort as he took a medical timeout for a back injury.

Malisse quickly capitalised as he broke for a 6-5 lead in the opening set, but was unable to make the most of his advantage as some intelligent play from Federer allowed the Swiss to take the opening set on a tiebreak.

Federer benefited from a 40-minute rain delay as he was able to receive further attention before returning to ease through the second set with Malisse dropping his serve three times.

The Belgian, who reached the semi-finals at the All England Club ten years ago, reduced the deficit by winning the third set and clawed his way back into the match with an early break in the fourth, but Federer, who made 44 winners, hit back to claim his 850th career victory in two hours and 11 minutes.

Next up for Federer is Mikhail Youzhny after the Russian reached the quarter-finals at the 12th attempt with a hard-fought victory over Denis Istomin. Youzhny twice took the lead only to be pegged back, but clinched the decider to claim a 6-3 5-7 6-4 6-7(5) 7-5 win in four hours and 16 minutes.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.