PARIS – Swiss great Roger Federer defeated Argentina’s Leonardo Mayer 6-2, 6-3, 6-3 on Sunday in one hour and 42 minutes to secure his 12th French Open quarterfinal appearance.
Returning to Roland Garros after a three-year absence, Federer is having a good run at the clay-court event, advancing to the quarterfinals without dropping a set.
The No. 3 seed proved to be untouchable on serve, facing no break points in the match, while winning 82 percent of first serve points and 69 percent of second serve points.
The 37-year-old Federer put pressure on his opponent from the beginning of the match, and he managed to win nearly half of Mayer’s 31 service points in the first set, getting breaks in the first and fifth games.
Two more break points were all Federer needed in the second set to seal it in a little more than 30 minutes.
In the third set, Federer got five break opportunities, but he managed to convert just one to secure his record 54th Grand Slam quarterfinal appearance.
Serbian star Novak Djokovic holds the second spot on the list of players with the most appearances in Grand Slam quarterfinals and is seeking his 44th, followed by Spaniard Rafael Nadal with 38 appearances.
At 37, Federer became the third oldest player to qualify for the French Open quarterfinals, behind American Pancho Gonzales, who made the last eight at 40 in 1968 and Hungary’s Istvan Gulyas, who achieved that feat at 39 in 1971.
The Swiss star also became the oldest player to make a Grand Slam quarterfinal since American Jimmy Connors did it at the US Open in 1991.
Next up for Federer will be either countryman Stan Wawrinka or Greece’s Stefanos Tsitsipas.
Federer has a 22-3 career record against Wawrinka, with the former world No. 1 winning the six most recent matches between them.
The 20-time Grand Slam champion has faced Tsitsipas three times, with all the meetings coming this season. Federer lost to Tsitsipas at the Australian Open and beat him in Dubai.
Federer was forced to withdraw due to a leg injury before taking the court against Tsitsipas in the Italian Open quarterfinals.