Location at Wimbledon no problem for Federer, Nadal

July 1st, 2008 - 2:30 pm ICT by IANS  

London, July 1 (DPA) Main showcourt cheers during comprehensive wins from Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal drowned out the moans from a pair of “exiled” women’s seeds Monday as the Wimbledon Championships began their second week. Federer saw off fading force Lleyton Hewitt 7-6 (9-7), 6-2, 6-4 while two-time finalist Nadal reached the quarter-finals for the third consecutive year as he crushed Russian Mikhail Youzhny 6-3, 6-3, 6-1.

The Spanish second seed had a knee scare as he slid for a shot and had to receive treatment early in the contest. But Nadal said it was nothing serious.

“I felt a little bit of pain, and I was a little bit scared, like a crack behind the knee. But I think it’s fine, and I never thought about giving up the match,” he said.

While all went smoothly for the leading men, women’s number two seed Jelena Jankovic - making an injured exit and complaining at being sent to the minor Court 18 - and number six Serena Williams were none too happy about the day’s scheduling.

Jankovic slammed officials after her 3-6, 2-6 fourth-round loss to Thai veteran Tamarine Tanasugarn on minor Court 18.

The Serb, who was denied a later start in the day after hoping to rehab a knee problem, was displeased.

“I was almost playing in the parking lot,” Jankovic said. “I almost need a helicopter to go to my court.”

Williams, who won the title in 2002 and 2003, also felt slighted after winning on Court 2, where she beat Bethanie Mattek 6-3, 6-3.

“Initially I thought, is this the right schedule? I thought maybe there was a mistake. But I can’t dwell on that,” Williams said. “I have to really focus on winning.”

With the additional defeat of number four Svetlana Kuznetsova, Wimbledon has lost all four of the leading women’s seeds at the earliest point ever in its history.

Number three Maria Sharapova and number one Ana Ivanovic were beaten last week.

Federer, bidding for a sixth straight title at the event he loves, spared only a brief thought for Hewitt, the last man not named Federer to lift the trophy in 2002.

The Australian will need to get a long-running hip injury sorted out, now that his Wimbledon is over.

“I feel bad that he’s injured - for a split second,” said the 12-time Grand Slam champion Swiss. “But he was still dangerous. He still had breakpoints in the third. You never know. All of a sudden maybe he won’t feel that hip, maybe, that much any more if the adrenaline starts to come along.”

Federer saved all eight break points he faced, improving to 14-7 over Hewitt.

Mario Ancic outlasted Spanish surprise Fernando Verdasco 3-6, 4-6, 6-3, 6-4, 13-11, taking nearly four hours, and will line up Wednesday against Federer.

The Croatian was the last man to beat Federer on grass - 48 matches ago in the 2002 first round.

Spain’s grass-loving Feliciano Lopez knocked out 10th seed Marcos Baghdatis 5-7, 6-2, 3-6, 7-6 (7-4), 8-6, while Marat Safin stretched his fresh seam of form as he eliminated 13th-seeded Stanislas Wawrinka of Switzerland 6-4, 6-3, 5-7, 6-1.

Scot Andy Murray recovered from two sets to love down for only the second time in his career as he rallied past eighth seed Richard Gasquet as darkness fell, winning 5-6, 3-6, 7-6 (7-3), 6-2, 6-4.

“The light was tough at the end,” said Murray after his three-hour adventure.

“I wanted to try and finish the match, and I’m sure Richard wanted to stop. But the end was my best moment I’ve ever had on a tennis court. To come back after he served for it was astonishing.”

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