Formidable Roger Federer cruises imperiously into semi-finals

Roger Federer became the first singles player to book his semi-final spot at the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals with a 7-6 (7/5) 6-3 victory over Robin Soderling.

"Playing against Robin's never easy, he's a big hitter, but I played really well against a player who's in great shape also so I'm really pleased," said Federer. "I was able to come out today and play a good, tough, solid match against a player who I thought was in good shape. I purposely didn't want to know the calculations before today's match, whereas I was in the loop very clearly what I needed to do last year, which I think played on my mind a little bit. So I think, thanks to what happened last year, I was better prepared this year. I just wanted to come out and try to play as good a match as I could."

It was confirmed after the match Soderling, who reached the semi-finals on his debut last year, was definitely out of contention for a last-four spot because of his games percentage.

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The Swede picked out the backhand he left that won Federer the first set and the world No 2's successful challenge in the opening game of the second as the key points in the match.

He said: "I think against a player like Roger, you need to have a little bit of luck to win. And I definitely didn't have the luck on my side today."