Richard reached the quarter finals in Rome by defeating Roger Federer 4-6 7-6 7-6 and will play against Tomas Berdych.
The start could not have been worse. Roger stormed over Richard, broke his opening game to love and scored 10 consecutive points. But Richard was able to resist and break the spell for 2 all. Federer used a weak service game from Richard for another break and took the first set 6-4.
Richard had to save breakpoints in the forth game of the second set, one of them was fought off with a 200 km/h ace. The organisers missed on open water hose and there was an interruption to let the court dry. Richard seemed to have lost his momentum a bit and conceded a beak to let Roger go up 4-2. But he found his groove again, made the rebreak and reached a tiebreak. Some errors by Roger and a stunning forehand made him win the breaker 7-2.
No breakpoints for either player in the third set. Minibreaks for Richard came and went, but it was again a forehand with which he reached the decisive advantage for 5-3. Roger made one more point on his serve, but Richard showed no hesitation serving out and taking the final breaker 7-4. It was a mentally strong performance from Richard with a winner-unforced error-ratio of 40-19, compared to Federer's 47-30.