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07 Sep 2010

Roger Federer continued his smooth progress through the US Open draw with a straight-sets win over 13th seed Jurgen Melzer in round four.

The five-time champion was in good form as he eased to a 6-3 7-6 (7-4) 6-3 victory in the night session.

Federer had some luck in the second set tie-break with two net-cords and had to recover from a break down in the third, but was always in control of the match.

The Swiss will play fifth seed Robin Soderling in the quarter-finals.

Soderling had to recover from losing the first set before finally seeing off Spain's 21st seed Albert Montanes 4-6 6-3 6-2 6-3 on the Louis Armstrong Stadium.

"He's always been a dangerous player but these days he's been able to do it consistently, at the highest level," Federer said about Soderling. "So this is a tough draw for me, playing him in the quarters."

Federer was not at his absolute best in the night match and had a bit of fortune in the second set tie-break with two dead net cords, the second coming at 4-4, but he was rarely troubled by Melzer.

 The Austrian had a glimmer of hope with a break at the start of the third set but Federer recovered it immediately and went on to close out the match in two hours and two minutes.

"I'm happy and really relieved I'm through," said Federer. "I haven't lost a set so obviously I'm really happy. I'm finding a way to win, playing the right way, playing aggressively. I've worked extremely hard. It's nice to see it paying off."

Gael Monfils earlier became the first Frenchman to reach the US Open quarter-finals in 10 years following a straight-sets win over compatriot Richard Gasquet.

The world number 19 and 17th seed won 6-4 7-5 7-5 in an enthralling encounter against his good friend.

Monfils recorded 14 aces and 40 winners in two hours and 35 minutes to reach only his third Grand Slam quarter-final, where he will play Novak Djokovic.

The Serbian number three seed secured his sixth successive Grand Slam quarter-final with his fifth straight win over Fish in all competitions, dominating the 19th seed from the first set before wrapping up a 6-3 6-4 6-1 victory in one hour 50 minutes.

"It was a great performance and probably my best so far in the tournament," said Djokovic after his win on Arthur Ashe Stadium.

"I'm pleased I'm playing better and better. Hopefully I can go a step further but the way I'm playing I have a good chance."

Djokovic has yet to lose to Monfils in four previous matches, but the Serb remained cautious about his chances of reaching the US Open semi-finals for the fourth successive year.

"Monfils is physically one of the strongest on the circuit. I will have to work for my points but the better player will win," he added.

Monfils capitalised on a Gasquet double fault for the only break of the first set in the third game, while a similar aberration in the penultimate game of the second set gave the 24-year-old a 2-0 match lead.

But despite the deficit, Gasquet was producing a string of impressive winners as well as his proficiency at the net.

The 24-year-old broke Monfils in the sixth game of the third set before holding on to his serve for a 5-2 lead.

But Monfils responded magnificently as he won five successive games to book his last-eight place.

"I know it's tough to close the match," he said. "I know he got a bit nervous and he missed a couple easy shots. The key I think was to put one more in than him."


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