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The Swiss legend beat Austrian veteran Jurgen Melzer in four sets in round one, before recording a straight-sets victory against the young American Noah Rubin in the second round. Federer then stepped it up a level to destroy 10th seed Tomas Berdych in the fourth round, and edged past fifth seed Kei Nishikori in five sets to reach the quarter-final.
The 30-year-old leftie beat Guillermo Garcia-Lopez in round one, 19th seed John Isner in five sets in round two, and Malek Jaziri in the last 32. And then against all expectations, the swashbuckling serve-volleyer took out world No 1 Murray in four sets to set up a date with the four-time Australian Open champion Federer.
“I felt great in the fifth, I must say. Great energy. Even deep into the fourth I thought, ‘Yeah, fifth, here we go, no problem for me. I’m feeling good about my chances’.
“I was playing positive tennis, I was playing offensive. My body was reacting.
“I was playing way better than the first couple of rounds where I put in a lot of mental energy to stay with my opponents, figure them out, how were they going to play, how were the conditions going to be – understanding the comeback really.
“I think now that I’m in the tournament I was able to focus point per point on my opponent, on the tactics. That didn’t drain me much. I felt great in the fifth, which I’m very happy about.”