Federer cruises past Willis at SW19

Seven-time champion Roger Federer won his Wimbledon second round match against British qualifier Marcus Willis in straight sets on Wednesday.

World No 772 Willis grabbed all the headlines on Monday as a rank outsider and tennis coach at a boat club who earned himself £50,000 and a second-round meeting with the great Federer by upsetting World No 54 Ricardis Berankis in straight sets.

It was a tennis fairytale, but one always destined to come to an end sooner rather than later, and it proved to be sooner, as Federer took just 87 minutes on a packed Centre Court to beat the underdog 6-0, 6-3, 6-4.

In the first set, the Swiss dominated needing just 25 minutes to wrap up the first set 6-0.

It was a different match thereafter as Willis, encouraged by the home crowd, held his serve in the second game of the second set. Things went with serve until he was broken by Federer in the sixth game for the number three seed to win the set 6-3.

Willis kept trying and made Federer work for his points in the third, but was broken in the ninth game as the 34-year-old Federer served out the match and claimed the final set 6-4.

“It was very different. Marcus brought some unbelievable energy to the court with his play, the fans and his enthusiasm as well, said Federer.

“My mindset going was I was playing a guy ranked in the top 5o because that is how he was playing. I hope he can rise up the rankings now. It was a pleasure for me to play against him.”

Willis said: “It is daunting. It is tough. I was playing alright at first, I settled into the match. I was enjoying it out there. If I was playing well and competing with Roger for a couple of sets I was doing well.

“I need to keep my head down. I am disappointed to lose. I didn’t play as well as I could but I can hold my head high. I have had a fantastic couple of weeks. I will keep going and do what I have been doing. There is life after Wimbledon and I want more experiences like this.

“I have earned myself a beer now!”

In a rain-interrupted first round match on Court Three, Austrian eighth seed Dominic Thiem needed one hour and 40 minutes to down unseeded Florian Mayer 7-5, 6-4, 6-4.

The German had beaten Thiem in their last grass-court encounter in the semi-finals of the Halle tournament earlier this month.

The 22-year-old Thiem mixed up his game with deft touches, drop shots and powerful ground strokes to grind out the victory, finishing things off on his first match point.

In some other first-round men’s singles results, 24th seed Alexander Zverev of Germany beat France’s Paul-Henri Mathieu 6-3, 6-4, 6-2 and Jiri Vesely of the Czech Republic defeated Igor Sijsling of the Netherlands 6-2, 6-4, 7-6(7).

Radu Albot of Moldova beat Portugal’s Gastao Elias in four sets, winning 3-6, 6-2, 7-5, 6-4 while Australian 19th seed Bernard Tomic needed two hours and 50 minutes to get past Fernando Verdasco of Spain 4-6, 6-3, 6-3, 3-6, 6-4.

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