London: It was twelve years ago that Gilles Muller had last defeated a then-19-year-old Rafael Nadal at Wimbledon. And on Monday, the 34-year-old from Luxembourg did it again, as the 16th seed is through to his first Wimbledon quarter-final after shocking the Spaniard 6-3, 6-4, 3-6, 4-6, 15-13 in an epic fourth-round clash.
Terming it to be the biggest win of his career, Muller said, “I had a big [elbow] injury in 2013 and wasn't sure if I was going to be able to come back. I’ve played many great matches since then, but this is definitely the biggest victory since I came back. Especially at this stage of a Grand Slam, playing one of the guys who is dominating tennis again this year.”
Meanwhile, seven-time champion Roger Federer continued with his dominance in the Championship as the Swiss great got the better Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov in the fourth-round beating him 6-4, 6-2, 6-4 to move into his 15th Wimbledon quarterfinal. Federer now stands alone atop the Open Era list for most Wimbledon quarter-final appearances.
On the other hand former World No. 1 Novak Djokovic had to overcome a worrying shoulder injury but went on to book his berth in the quarterfinal by beating Adrian Mannarino 6-2, 7-6(5), 6-4. Djokovic needed a medical timeout, while leading 4-3 in the third set, for treatment on his right shoulder. However, he went on to win the match in two hours and 14 minutes.
Djokovic will now meet 31-year-old Tomas Berdych who recorded his second Top 10 match win of the year to knock out eighth-seeded Austrian Dominic Thiem 6-3, 6-7(1), 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 in two hours and 53 minutes on Monday for a place in the quarter-finals at The Championships.
KONTA WINS THRILLER AGAINST HALEP
In the women’s section, Britain’s Johanna Konta got the better of Simona Halep in a three set thriller to reach the Wimbledon semifinals.
No.2 seed Halep was bidding to become WTA World No.1 and would have clinched the ranking with a victory. However, Konta recovered strongly from dropping the opening set, coming back to win 6-7(2), 7-6(5), 6-4.
“To be in the semifinals of my home slam, and to do that in front of a full Centre Court, I mean, it's pretty, pretty special,” Konta said in her post-match press conference.
“I think the level of tennis that both of us played today, it was just a tremendous match. So I think just to be a part of a match like that again, I've been very fortunate this Championships. I feel very lucky.”
Meanwhile, unseeded Magdalena Rybarikova overcame a rain delay and a court change to make her first Grand Slam semifinal under the Centre Court roof at Wimbledon. She ousted No.24 seed CoCo Vandeweghe in the quarterfinals, 6-3, 6-3 to reach the final four at a Grand Slam for the very first time.