Madrid – 2R
Roger Federer  raced to a 5:3 lead against Feliciano Lopez in the last match of the second round, and having beaten the Spaniard in all seven previous encounters, would have expected a standard 6-3, 6-4 win. Lopez somehow saved four set points in that 9th game and the match twisted rapidly. Since that moment, both players held their serves to the end of the all-tie-break match two hours later! In the 1st tie-break, Lopez had four set points (6:5, 8:7, 10:9, 12:11), Federer saved them all thanks to great service performance, especially the first one – an ace on second serve (!) – to finally convert his 9th set point, winning the breaker 15 points to 13; admittedly he is a specialist of winning long tie-breaks #. In the 2nd tie-break Lopez played impressive first three points (three winners from the baseline) which decided the final outcome. Federer had a triple break point at 3:2 in the deciding set, but Lopez escaped with great serves and third consecutive tie-break was required. Supported by partisan crowd, Lopez would have probably won the match if hadn’t missed an easy overhead after a bounce, leading 5:2*. Instead of 4 successive match points there was ‘5 all’. Federer made an unforced error which gave Lopez first match point, but the Swiss saved it with an ace ‘down the T’. Five points later Lopez sent backhand long and Federer could celebrate his first match point-down triumph since Shanghai 2006! He won also the battle of aces 25-23. Poor Lopez has lost four match point-up matches this year, including three all-tie-break defeats!## Other Top 5 players (Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray and Robin Soderling) + virtual Top 5 player (Juan Martin del Potro) won their matches easily, however, Murray dropped a set against Gilles Simon. “I think he’s the worst rival to have to face in the second outing of a tournament,” said Nadal about his next opponent Del Potro. D’Joke posting a comfortable 6-3, 6-4 win over Kevin Anderson (the Serb faced only two break points in one game), has joined the elite group of players with at least 30 matches won in a row. “It’s a fact that I am playing the best tennis of my life and I’m definitely happy about it,” he said after the 28th win of the year, stating that “strong mental ability to handle the pressure and play the right shots at the right time” are the keys to his amazing streak.
# Federer’s long tie-breaks (at least 20 points):
Won: 12-10 S.Draper, 14-12 M.Verkerk, 20-18 M.Safin, 11-9 F.Gonzalez, 11-9 T.Haas, 13-11 D.Nalbandian, 11-9 O.Rochus, 16-14 D.Ferrer, 12-10 T.Berdych, 13-11 A.Murray, 15-13 F.Lopez
Lost: 10-12 G.Canas, 9-11 T.Henman, 9-11 J.Blake
## Lopez’s match point-up defeats in 2011:
Sydney, 1R: JM.Del Potro 7-6(5), 6-7(9), 6-7(3) – 1 m.p.
Johannesburg, 1R: F.Dancevic 7-6(5), 2-6, 6-7(8) – 1 m.p.
Davis Cup: S.Darcis 7-6(4), 6-7(6), 6-7(3) – 1 m.p.
Madrid, 2R: R.Federer 6-7(13), 7-6(1), 6-7(7) – 1 m.p.
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