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Federer beats up Berrettini, sets up meeting with Air K

Reuters

Roger Federer hits a shot during his fourth-round match against Matteo Berrettini at Wimbledon on Monday.

ReutersLONDON (Reuters) — Roger Federer’s warmup was probably more taxing than his fourth-round match at Wimbledon on Monday as he raced into a record-extending 17th quarterfinal with a ruthless dismissal of exciting young Italian Matteo Berrettini.

On paper it looked like being Federer’s first serious test of the tournament against the powerful 17th seed with form on grass, but it proved no-contest as the Swiss won 6-1, 6-2, 6-2 in 1 hour 14 minutes. Eight-time Wimbledon champion Federer, as usual, was immaculate but the 23-year-old Berrettini self-destructed.

The Italian complained he could not see the ball as his Centre Court debut became a nightmare and his game disintegrated. Federer barely broke sweat.

While an over-anxious Berrettini thrashed around with little effect, Federer, approaching his 38th birthday, glided across the turf in his usual silky fashion as another of the game’s so-called next generation was swatted aside. Federer makes it all look so easy but loose-limbed displays like this require some graft these days.

“I think I have to warm up much more than I used to which is not the most fun bit, to be honest,” Federer, who will play Kei Nishikori in his 55th Grand Slam quarterfinal, said.

“I used to jump up and down for a minute when I was 21 or 19. Now we go through this entire routine. I’m like, Really, do we really have to do it?

“I guess it helps, so I’m doing it. When I get bored of it, I’ll stop playing tennis completely or I’ll stop that routine first before I stop playing.”

Berrettini can fire down 225 kph serves and owns a whipcrack forehand not unlike Rafael Nadal’s. Sadly, for him and his dream of becoming only the fifth Italian to reach the men’s quarterfinals here, both malfunctioned.

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