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US Open: Federer survives another 5-set marathon

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Rafa Nadal pumps fist in delight after overcoming tough opening round opponent at US Open

"Extremely well, I wasn't here a year ago". So that would have been tougher for me maybe to back it up back-to-back days.

Women's top seed Karolina Pliskova has advanced to the third round by rallying for a 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 victory over American Nicole Gibbs.

Federer, began in fine fettle against Mikhail Youzhny but things became a lot more complicated when he failed to serve out the second set before he eventually recovered to win 6-1 6-7 (3/7) 4-6 6-4 6-2.

All the matches are hard and especially here.

But the true picture, perhaps, could be found in his players' box. "I prefer he plays against not such good players!" "I wanted to ask you, Switzerland is really cool right?" the kid asked over the sound of the cameras going off.

"I am here to improve every day".

Tuesday night, it was American teenager Frances Tiafoe who battled the 36-year-old Federer to five sets, before the Swiss legend emerged victorious just before midnight.

Roger Federer needed a second successive five-setter to reach the US Open third round on Thursday with a 6-1, 6-7 (3/7), 4-6, 6-4, 6-2 win over fellow veteran Mikhail Youzhny of Russian Federation.

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As you'd expect from an all-time great like Federer, though, he rallied back from that surprising first set and dominated Tiafoe over the next two.

It was the second consecutive five-set match for the 19-time Grand Slam champion, who struggled against American Frances Tiafoe in the opening round.

Federer now boasts a ideal 17-0 record against the former world number eight from Russian Federation, whose ranking had slumped to 101 before today's encounter.

The third seed could barely hit a backhand in court, his normally ultra reliable serve was all over the place and his footwork was too slow to cope with Tiafoe's thumping forehand. I kind of lost my footing sometimes. However, he was able to maintain composure over the five-set thriller, which he won 4-6, 6-2, 6-1, 1-6, 6-4. "I feel quite warmed up by now", in his post-match interview.

His level of play dipped considerably over the last two sets on Thursday as he appeared to be restricted by a leg cramp.

According to Grand Slam rules, a player may not receive a medical time-out for muscle cramping, and a player can only receive treatment for muscle cramps during a change of ends and/or set breaks. I won through fitness, as well, which is clearly always a good feeling to have. We go back to the '98 juniors here, we played each other in doubles. "We've played a bunch of times and this was probably our best match".

However, the world number three used all his experience to come through the scare and grind out a 4-6 6-2 6-1 1-6 6-4 victory.

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