Wimbledon 2021: Roger Federer stunned by Hubert Hurkacz; Swiss great’s quest for ninth title ends

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Federer – the eight-time All England Club champion – has not reached the heights of years gone by, as an injury spared his blushes in the fifth set in the first round against Adrian Mannarino and he lost a set to Cameron Norrie in the third round.

And the 39-year-old was undone in style by the big-serving Hurkacz, playing at this stage of a grand slam for the first time in his career after claiming a surprise five-set win over Daniil Medvedev in the fourth round. The Swiss No.6 seed’s bid to become the oldest man to reach the semi-finals at The Championships in the Open era was ended.

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That match stretched into a second day but Federer was the player bereft of energy, Hurkacz emerging victorious from the biggest match of his life by a 6-3 7-6 (7-4) 6-0 scoreline.

Hurkacz settled quickly despite the challenge of facing his childhood idol and had three break points at 2-2 and 40-0 in the first set, only to let that advantageous situation slip.

He did not make the same mistake two games later, emphatically dispatching a backhand volley to claim the sole break he needed to take the opener. That looked a rare blip for Federer when he surged into a 4-1 second-set lead, only for Hurkacz to reel off the next three games en route to forcing a tie-break.

Hurkacz’s prowess at the net continued to cause Federer problems and it was the Pole who eventually forged ahead in the tie-break, moving two sets up with a booming serve down the middle. Unsurprisingly errant on the forehand side, a frustrated and flat Federer surrendered a break in his first service game of the third.

And two more came with a tame shot into the net and a wide forehand as the 20-time grand slam champion’s challenge came to an end with him losing a set 6-0 at Wimbledon for the first time. As the sun shone through the roof, the crowd did their best to gee up Federer. Instead, it was Hurkacz who soaked up the noise, recovered from an early break and sent the set into a tie-break. Rattled Federer totally misjudged a forehand volley and then slipped and failed to connect with another one. The Pole made the most of the opportunities.

Coming back from two sets down was always going to be a big call and Federer simply could not find a way against an opponent playing out of his skin. But that final 6-0 will really have hurt.

(With OPTA inputs)

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