Roger Federer secures milestone 300th grand slam win
Australian Open: The 34-year-old secured victory over Grigor Dimitrov in four sets
Roger Federer of Switzerland won his third round match at the Australian Open on Friday. Photograph: EPA
Roger Federer became the first male player to win 300 grand slam singles matches when he moved into the fourth round of the Australian Open with a 6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 6-4 victory over Grigor Dimitrov at the Rod Laver Arena on Friday.
The 34-year-old improved to 5-0 against Dimitrov, a young Bulgarian with a similar style, including two wins in two weeks. Dimitrov took a set off Federer for the first time in the quarter-finals at the Brisbane International, and did that again in Melbourne.
Dimitrov needed treatment at times, but Federer didn’t cut him any slack – he lost in the third round here last year, his worst run at Melbourne Park since 2001.
“You’re aware of it – I’m a veteran so I don’t get distracted,” Federer said. “I’ve been fooled too many times when I was a teenager. I hope he’s OK.”
Earlier Kei Nishikori had some trouble with his wrist, taking a medical timeout and losing the next set before recovering to reach the fourth round with a 7-5, 2-6, 6-3, 6-4 win Friday over the No26 seed Guillermo Gárcia-López. He’ll next play the 2008 Australian Open finalist Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, who beat fellow Frenchman Pierre-Hugues Herbert 6-4, 7-6 (9-7), 7-6 (7-4).
Nishikori reached the 2014 US Open final and the quarter-finals at the Australian and French Opens in 2015 before withdrawing from his second-round match at Wimbledon with an injured left leg.
Returning to the fourth round at Melbourne Park for the fourth straight year was a boost to his confidence and he said his right wrist felt OK.
“In the first set I was sore but after treatment I felt better,” he said. “I tried to stay tough, concentrated again – I played better in last set.”
There was a full house on Margaret Court Arena for the match, including a big section of Japanese supporters waving flags, while matches on uncovered outside courts were delayed because of rain. Play finally began on some outdoor courts after more than a six-hour delay, and seven doubles matches were postponed.
No15 David Goffin beat No19 Dominic Thiem 6-1, 3-6, 7-6 (7-2), 7-5 – his first win against a top-20 player at a Grand Slam. He faces a tougher proposition next: Federer.