American Sam Querrey continued his trend of knocking out defending Wimbledon champions as he reached his first Grand Slam semifinal with a shock five-set victory over Sir Andy Murray.
Querrey, who ended Novak Djokovic’s title defense last year, took advantage of Sir Andy’s injury problems to clinch a 3-6, 6-4, 6-7, 6-1, 6-1 triumph on Center Court at the All England Lawn Tennis Club.
Three-time winner Djokovic also exited the tournament as he retired hurt when trailing 7-6, 2-0 to 2010 finalist Tomáš Berdych of the Czech Republic.
There were no such troubles for Swiss maestro Roger Federer, who swept aside last year’s runner-up Milos Raonic of Canada 6-4, 6-2, 7-6.
Federer, the pre-tournament favorite who has lifted the Wimbledon title on seven occasions, was in supreme form once again as he put in another impressive display.
The 35-year-old will play Berdych in the semifinals.
Querrey, the world number 28, also became the first American man to progress to the semifinals of one of tennis’ four major tournaments since Andy Roddick at Wimbledon in 2009.
The big-serving American, seeded 24th, will face Marin Čilić on Friday (July 14) after the Croatian overcame Rafael Nadal’s conqueror Gilles Muller of Luxembourg 3-6, 7-6, 7-5, 5-7, 6-1.
Seventh seed Cilic will now compete in his first Wimbledon semi-final having reached his fourth consecutive quarterfinal.
Querrey, competing in his 42nd Grand Slam, lost the first set but recovered to claim the second after breaking the Briton’s serve twice in a row.
The Olympic gold medalist was then broken again in the last game of the third but managed to win the tie-break to move to within one set of a place in the final.
It was at this point where the two-time Wimbledon champion’s sore hip began to take its toll and Querrey exploited the weakness with an array of impressive groundstrokes.
The American stepped up a gear in the fourth and fifth sets, winning 12 of the last 14 games to wrap up arguably the greatest victory of his career.
“I didn’t start my best but I kept with it, kept swinging away, then really found a groove in the fourth and fifth sets and then everything started falling my way,” said Querrey.
“It feels great – this is a dream come true, to be in the semifinals and to have it at Wimbledon makes it feel more special.”
By Liam Morgan
Republished with permission from insidethegames.biz.