French Open tennis - Roger Federer comes through late-night scare against Dominik Koepfer in Paris
It was not an easy evening for Roger Federer as he played late into the night against Dominik Koepfer and eventually won through in four gruelling sets to progress through to the fourth round at the 2021 French Open. Whilst he produced a number of memorable shots, it was a scrappy encounter for much of its duration and it took a great deal of resolve for Federer to pull through.
Highlights: Federer battles through in late night clash with Koepfer
Published 05/06/2021 at 19:11 GMT | Updated 06/06/2021 at 07:45 GMT
Roger Federer was given a serious challenge by Dominik Koepfer in their French Open third-round clash with the Swiss eventually able to close out a four-set win, 7-6 6-7 7-6 7-5, late on Saturday night.
It was a quite ridiculous shot from the 39-year-old eighth seed, who is aiming to win his 21st Grand Slam title in Paris this fortnight.
Indeed, it was not the first wonder shot from Federer in the contest. Earlier he produced a sumptuous drop volley to win a point in hugely impressive fashion.
'How about that?!' - Federer with 'dream' drop volley
The late evening slot on Court Philippe Chatrier with no fans inside the stadium always leaves a strange atmosphere and both players appeared to struggle at times to muster the energy to be at the top of their games.
The Swiss has now spoken openly about considering pulling out of the tournament due to the stress and strain on his body from the gruelling late match.
"I mean, every match here or at Geneva I have to reassess the situation after the match and see how the knee feels the next morning," Federer said.
"So from that standpoint for me it's always like that. There is no difference after a match like this, but maybe even more so after a match like this that has been long.
Federer reveals he may pull out of French Open
"Like I explained before, I have not been through three-and-a-half-hour battles in practice either.
We go through these matches, we analyse them highly and look on what's next. We will do the same here on Sunday, because I need to decide if I keep on playing or not.
"Is it not too much risk at this moment to keep on pushing or is this just a perfect way to just take a rest?"
Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic and Federer have all found themselves in the same part of the men's draw in what is an intriguing prospect.
The draw looks particularly exciting for Stefanos Tsitsipas, Daniil Medvedev and Alexander Zverev with the trio not having to face any of the 'Big Three' until the final at least.
Djokovic could take on Nadal in the semi-finals in Paris in what would be a repeat from last year's final in the postponed autumnal edition.
The three most successful players in the history of the men's game have won 17 of the last 20 Grand Slam titles between them.
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