Switzerland's Roger Federer defeated American John Isner in a close match, 6-4, 7-6(5) to advance to the semifinals of the 2012 London Olympic Games. The second set and match closed with a tie-breaker at 6-5 with Isner serving. Federer hit a backhand return which hit the top of the net and dropped onto Isner's side of the court, making it impossible for Isner to return.
“I think I am playing my best,” said Federer. “I don’t know if I can play a whole lot better. Overall, I’m extremely happy. Obviously, being in the medal matches, at least I’ll get two shots. That’s why I looked at this match as a final. You can imagine the relief and happiness I feel right now."
The match was dominated by its many service holds. In the first set, both Federer and Isner went back and forth holding serve. After his serve, Isner often came to the net to block the return that Federer hit back as he looked to throw off Federer at the baseline. Federer maintained concentration during the long points, playing very consistent. When Isner tried to hit tough winners, they often fell right into the net.
After the match, Federer had said he felt confident going into the match and he knew he could create points with his game. He also said that he forced Isner into some errors.
Federer will next meet Argentina's Juan Martin del Potro in the semifinal to play for a medal. The Argentinian defeated Japan's Kei Nishikori 6-4, 7-6.
Federer is the favorite to win on grass with his 12-2 career advantage over Del Potro. He won against Del Potro in straight sets at Wimbledon in 2007, but did lose to him on hard courts at the 2009 Barclays ATP World Tour Finals in London.