Roger Federer won another tight match today in Stuttgart, beating German veteran Florian Mayer 7-6(2), 7-6(1) to clinch his 1,072nd career match win, putting him alone in second place behind Jimmy Connors (1,256).
“I think it was a good match really, with long rallies,” said Federer. “I thought that I played much better. I’m not sure if the stats showed it, but I felt [that] I served better. I’m really pleased how I felt this morning, my shoulder is a little sore having served a lot against Fritz. But that’s exactly the kind of thing I need to feel having gotten back onto the match courts.”
In the Saturday semifinals, Federer, who is playing his first event after missing the French Open, meets Dominic Thiem. The Austrian Top 10er handed Federer a third round defeat in Rome and since made the semifinals in Paris.
“I’m now really excited about the semi-final against Thiem, who has had a great run this year,” said Federer. “It will be a tough match, but I hope my experience will help me.”
Thiem, who has little experience on the grass, defeated Mikhail Youzhny.
In the other semifinal, Juan Martin del Potro will battle Philipp Kohlschreiber. Del Potro beat ran away from Gilles Simon 6-7, 6-3, 6-0 while the German Kohlschreiber ousted qualifier Radek Stepanek 6-4, 7-5.
The Argentine has never made a grass court final. And shots like this won’t help his effort:
In Den Bosch, it’s grass and the big servers are out in full force. The semifinal line-up pits Gilles Muller against Ivo Karlovic and then Sam Querrey vs. Nicolas Mahut.
Muller upset the top seed David Ferrer 4-6, 6-4, 7-6(5) to reach the semifinals.
“I’ve lost a few very close matches this year, so it feels good to win like that,” Muller said. “David is a great returner, so that pushed me to serve very close to the lines and to make it too good. He forced me to miss a lot of first serves. Today was a very up-and-down match, so if I want to improve, I have to stay calm and focus on what I can do.”
Notably, Mahut beat Bernard Tomic in three.
“It is really difficult to play against Bernard on grass, so I am happy with the way I was able to come back after the first set,” Mahut said. “I served much better and the early break in the second set gave me a lot of confidence.”
SATURDAY STUTTGART SCHEDULE
CENTER COURT start 12:00
 R. Federer (SUI) vs  D. Thiem (AUT)
[WC] J. del Potro (ARG) vs  P. Kohlschreiber (GER)
M. Daniell (NZL) / A. Sitak (NZL) vs  F. Mergea (ROU) / H. Tecau (ROU)
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