Roger Federer chalked up another monumental milestone to reach the Wimbledon semi-finals on Wednesday, recovering to beat Japan’s Kei Nishikori 4-6 6-1 6-4 6-4 and become the first man to record a century of singles wins at any Grand Slam.
Number two seed Federer was so poor in the first set that the eighth-seeded Nishikori may have felt the 37-year-old Swiss’s advancing years had finally caught up with him.
Yet the remainder of the contest had just enough flourishes of pure brilliance from the eight times champion to make it a worthy occasion for him to become the sole male member of the Grand Slam 100 club.
Federer’s victory raised the prospect that Wimbledon may once again play host to one of the sport’s greatest rivalries, provided Rafa Nadal overcomes big-serving American Sam Querrey to tee up a clash against his old Swiss foe in the semi-finals.
The duo have not met at the All England Club since their titanic tussle in the 2008 final, when Nadal outlasted Federer over five thrilling sets that finished in the late evening gloom.
Federer overcomes shaky start to join Gram Slam 100 club