MELBOURNE, January 24 : Six-time champion Roger Federer survived an epic five-set marathon to seal his 100th Australian Open win Friday, fending off a huge challenge from John Millman.
The Swiss master was rattled by the all-guns-blazing Australian, but finally scraped past him 4-6, 7-6 (7/2), 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (10/8) to stay alive in his quest for a 21st Grand Slam title.
He will now take on unseeded Hungarian Marton Fucsovics, who eased past American Tommy Paul in straight sets, for a place in the last eight.
“It was tough tonight, thank God it was a super breaker,” said the third seed, who looked out for the count when he was down 8-4 in the best-of-10 fifth set super tiebreaker.
“He played a great match — I can’t even speak any more.
“It came down to the wire. I was getting ready to explain myself in the press conference. What a match.
“I had to figure out a way to get him in trouble on his serve,” he added. “He was doing such a nice job of not making many mistakes. I never really felt comfortable.”
The win handed him not only a 100th victory at Melbourne Park but gave him the distinction of becoming the only player, man or woman, to post a century of victories at two different Slams. (AFP)