Seppi came into Friday’s match having lost all 10 of his previous matches against the 17-time Grand Slam champion, snatching just one set in the process.
But incredibly the world No 46 pulled off a 6-4 7-6 (7-5) 4-6 7-6 (7-5) victory over the second seed, who reached at least the semi-final stage each year from 2004 to 2014.
“I just tried to enjoying playing on centre court (Rod Laver Arena) because it’s not often I get the chance,” Seppi said in his post-game interview.
“It was one of the best matches for sure otherwise I can’t win against Roger.
“It’s never comfortable playing against Roger, you never can feel comfortable.
“I was focusing on my service games as I was not getting many chances on his.
“The tie-break was great, especially the last point. I did not think I would get the ball. I thought it was a winner so I don’t know how I hit a winner.”
The 33-year-old 17-time Grand Slam champion struggled with his first serve early in the match, while the 30-year-old Seppi took advantage of three of his five break points to take a two sets to love lead.
Federer broke in the third game of the third set to begin what many on Rod Laver Arena thought would be a successful fight back.
Federer had been seeded to face either Andy Murray or Grigor Dimitrov in the??quarter-finals, and both the Scot and the Bulgarian will sense the draw opening??up, with possible semi-final rival Rafael Nadal also looking shaky early on in??the fortnight.
Seppi, however, forced a tie-break in the fourth and clinched victory with a desperate lunging forehand past the charging Federer at the net to set up a fourth-round clash with either home favourite Nick Kyrgios or Tunisia’s Malek Jaziri.
Seppi admitted he would relish the chance of facing another partisan crowd if he were to face youngster Kyrgios.??”It would be great, maybe on this court again, maybe again against all the people.”