Roger Federer once again made to sweat for his win in Basel

Roger Federer looking pensive

Roger Federer remains on course for a ninth Swiss Indoors title, but he once again didn’t have it all his own way against Gilles Simon.

The defending champion didn’t have an easy ride in his opening two matches and Simon also gave him a good work out before the 20-time Grand Slam winner got the job done with 7-6 (7-1), 4-6, 6-4 win in two hours and 34 minutes.

Unlike in the past, Federer has struggled to hold onto his serve this week and it was the Frenchman who broke in game two of the first set, but the Swiss hit back and then took the tie-breaker.

After four consecutive breaks from game three to six of the second set, Simon got the crucial break in game nine and then served it out to level things at one set each.

They traded a couple of early breaks in the decider before Federer got the job in game 10.

“I knew it was going to be difficult… I was a bit unsure of my serve and his return is excellent,” the world No 3 said after the match.

He will face Daniil Medvedev for a place in the final after the Russian beat Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-4, 3-6, 6-3.

The other semi-final will see second seed Alexander Zverev take on Marius Copil.

German Zverev was a 7-5, 6-3 winner over Roberto Bautista Agut from Spain while Copil secured a 7-6 (8-6), 7-5 victory over Taylor Fritz.

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