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By Chris Oddo | Friday, August 29, 2014

 
Roger Federer, 2014 US Open Day 5

Roger Federer eased past rocket-serving Aussie Sam Groth with some deft returning to set up a third-round encounter with Marcel Granollers.

Photo Source: AP

Roger Federer eased past rocket-serving Aussie Sam Groth in straight sets on Friday night in New York, 6-4, 6-4, 6-4, to set up a third-round encounter with Spain’s Marcel Granollers.

Swiss Maestro Making It Look Easy

Though Groth was able to hit 147 MPH on the radar gun, it didn’t keep Federer from making inroads into the big Aussie’s service games. At one point during the match Federer wowed the lively night session crowed by blocking a 142 MPH serve for a clean winner.

“What I like about these kind of matchups is there's always going to be something unusual that's going to happen, unusual shot-making,” Federer said. “You have to react rather than just always play percentage tennis. You just hope to get the other odd ball back, and then all of a sudden it drops short; you've got to run up to it. Whenever somebody is at the net or you're at the net, there's always something of the unknown that's going to happen a little bit more.”

Federer broke serve five times on eleven opportunities, which should have facilitated a rout for the Swiss maestro, but Groth managed to stay close to Federer in each set.

Federer broke for 4-3 in the opener with a magnificent backhand pass and served the set out to take the early lead.

After trading breaks in the second set, Federer would score the late break in the ninth game, then hold to love for a two sets to love lead.

In the third, Groth would threaten by moving ahead 4-2 when Federer netted a backhand, but Federer would respond to take the next four games to seal the victory in one hour and 48 minutes.

“To be honest, for me, I was trying not to get caught up in the whole Roger act out there,” Groth told reporters after the match.

He added: “I feel I should have won the third set. Game points at 4-2, game points at 4-All. I didn't execute when I needed to.”

Notes, Numbers>>>

Federer moved into a tie for 7th place on the all-time US Open win list with 69. He’s now two behind Pete Sampras and Bill Tilden, who are tied for 5th, and four behind Ivan Lendl.

Groth had never faced a top ten player before.

Federer improved to 24-1 in night session matches on Arthur Ashe Stadium with the win.


 

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