Federer survives; facile win for Nadal, Murray

CICINNATI: World No 1 Roger Federer was nearly blown off track, while Andy Murray and Rafael Nadal steered a steady course into the quarter-finals of the Cincinnati Masters.

Swiss top seed Federer rallied for a 3-6, 6-3, 6-4 win over Spain’s David Ferrer, to line up a meeting with Lleyton Hewitt. Top four seeds all advanced to the quarter-finals. Murray defeated Czech Radek Stepanek 6-4, 6-1. Nadal downed France’s Paul-Henri Mathieu 7-5, 6-2, and Serbian Novak Djokovic advanced with a 7-5, 6-3 victory over Jeremy Chardy.

Federer stretched his career lead over Ferrer to 9-0, but for a while it looked like the Spaniard might notch that first win against the Swiss. He broke Federer for a 5-3 lead, then held at love to pocket the first set. Federer went down an early break in the third, but this time he immediately broke back and cruised home from there.

Rogers Cup

TORONTO: Second-seeded Serena Williams eased into the Rogers Cup quarter-finals with victory over Ukrainian Alona Bondarenko.

Williams subdued Bondarenko 6-1, 6-4. Pole Agnieszka Radwanska beat Bondarenko’s sister Kateryna 7-5, 6-3. In the quarter-finals, Radwanska will face Maria Sharapova, who ousted seventh-seeded fellow Russian Vera Zvonareva 6-2, 7-6 (7/3). Jelena Jankovic saw off Kim Clijsters1-6, 6-3, 7-5.

In the quarter-finals Jankovic will take on Russian Alisa Kleybanova. Kleybanova toppled giant killer Aravane Rezai 6-3, 6-4. Fourth-seed Russian Elena Dementieva beat Israeli Shahar Peer 6-1, 1-6, 6-4.

In the quarter-finals Dementieva will face Australian Samantha Stosur, a 6-3, 6-1 winner over France’s Virginie Razzano. Czech qualifier Lucie Safarova booked a shot at Williams with a 7-6 (7/3), 6-4 win over China’s Zheng Jie.