French Open: Federer reaches 4th round

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> At the French Open, serving for the match in the third set, Federer was broken at love, then lost the ensuing tiebreaker.

Updated: February 25, 2007 11:34 IST
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One wretched game forced Roger Federer to work overtime. Serving for the match in the third set, Federer was broken at love, then lost the ensuing tiebreaker. That meant another 46 minutes of tense tennis before he beat Chile's Nicolas Massu 6-1, 6-2, 6-7 (4), 7-5 at the French Open on Friday. ''It's a pity I couldn't finish it earlier,'' Federer said. ''I guess it's concentration, picking the right shots at the right time. But in the end it was a good match for me.'' Massu let the top-ranked Federer off the hook in the final game, committing three unforced errors to lose serve. That kept Federer on course for a much-anticipated showdown against defending champion Rafael Nadal in the final next weekend. Nadal extended his record clay-court winning streak to 55 matches when he eliminated Kevin Kim 6-2, 6-1, 6-4, leaving one American in the men's draw: James Blake. He made the third round by beating Spanish clay-court specialist Nicolas Almagro 6-7 (5), 6-2, 6-4, 6-4. Rain on Thursday created a backlog in the schedule, and sunny, mild weather allowed the tournament to catch up on Friday. ''It's getting better and better with the blue sky, the sun and a game that improves with every round,'' said top-ranked Amelie Mauresmo, who won easily. With no major upsets, her words could be echoed by other top players. Second-round winners included Nadal, Martina Hingis, Kim Clijsters, and Elena Dementieva. Among those reaching the fourth round were Federer, Mauresmo, Venus Williams, Maria Sharapova, David Nalbandian and 2004 champion Gaston Gaudio. (AP)

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