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Federer, Williams into fourth round of retirement-hit U.S. Open


09:29, September 05, 2011

Roger Federer of Switzerland hits a return to Marin Cilic of Croatia during the third round match of women's singles at US Open tennis tournament in New York, Sept. 3, 2011. Federer won 3-1. (Xinhua/Shen Hong)

NEW YORK, Sept. 3 (Xinhua) -- Roger Federer met little trouble in moving forward to the fourth round of U.S. Open on Saturday, eliminating Marin Cilic of Croatia 6-3, 4-6, 6-4, 6-2.

"It was a tough match," Federer, the five-time champion, said after the two hour, 40-minute contest. "Coming in I knew it was going to be tricky and I'm happy that I was able to counter his pace and his good play."

Serena Williams, a three-time winner, demonstrated a powerful comeback in dispatching the first real test from fourth-seeded Victoria Azarenka 6-1, 7-6 (5).

The year's U.S. Open tournament would go down in history with a record 14 retirements with seeded players Tomas Berdych and Marcel Granollers becoming the latest on the withdrawal list.

It would reach 18 victims in the tournament including a couple of walkovers, highlighted by the pullout of Venus Williams and sixth-seede Robin Soderling on Wednesday for illness.

Cilic, the 27th seed, had his chances but could convert only two of nine break-point chances against the third-seeded Swiss.

Williams, who missed last year's tournament at the start of an 11-month injury and life-threatening illness lay-off, announced his strong return in a stylish match overpowering Azarenka.

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