Roger Federer thrashes Alexander Zverev, clinches ninth Halle Open title

Federer beats defending champ Mayer to earn Halle semifinal

Roger Federer thrashes Alexander Zverev, clinches ninth Halle Open title

At Halle: Gerry Weber Open: Quarterfinals: Roger Federer bt Florian Mayer 6-3, 6-4; Richard Gasquet bt Robin Haase 6-1, 3-6, 6-1; Karen Khachanov bt Andrey Rublev 7-6 (8), 4-6, 6-3.

The Swiss ace was at his elegant best as he dispatched his German opponent in just 52 minutes at the Gerry Weber Stadion, further justifying his decision to miss the entire clay-court season to focus on his grass-court campaign. "Roger is the best player of all time on grass, it will be a very hard match", Zverev said on the eve of the final.

"I want to extend this part of my career as much as I can, being careful about details and trying not to make wrong choices that can break this ideal balance which allows me to play in a relaxed way, enjoying and winning at 35", Tennis World quoted Federer as saying.

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He might even get an eighth title on the grass of Wimbledon, and then can start dreaming anew.

Federer won 6-3, 7-5 last spring at the Rome Masters before Zverev pulled off a 7-6 (4), 5-7, 6-3 upset in the Halle semifinals.

Zverev did finally set up a break point on the Federer serve in the first game of the second set, but it passed by and Federer raced on to complete victory.

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A break of serve which put the Swiss 5-2 ahead in the second set proved crucial and he clinched victory with his first match point courtesy of a typically sumptuous volley into an open court. "I'm feeling great on the court", said Cilic. "I was calm serving out the first and second sets".

For a man who has dominated the sport for so long, winning 18 Grand Slam titles along the way, a period away from the game was tough, and he admitted he was taking nothing for granted any more.

In Halle this week, Roger Federer analyzed the current situation his main rivals are going through and their recent results. He improved his Halle record to 57-6.

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Federer fired his 11th ace for a 5-3 and was unable to convert on three match points in the next game, with Mayer saving them all. Kvitova responded immediately as she blasted back from 40-0 down to reel off a series of winners and once again take control of the set.

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