Roger Federer v Jo-Wilfried Tsonga: Australian Open as it happened

Roger Federer beats Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in five sets and will face Andy Murray in the Australian Open semi-finals.

23 January 2013 Last updated at 12:37 GMT

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As it happened

  1. 1232: 

    Right then, time for me to go and have a lie down in a darkened room. Be sure to join Aimee Lewis in the early hours of Thursday (otherwise known as day 11 of the Australian Open) for the women's semi-finals between Li Na and Maria Sharapova and Victoria Azaranka versus Sloan Stephens. Then comes the first men's semi-final between Novak Djokovic and David Ferrer.

    Friday will be special too: Andy Murray versus Roger Federer in the second men's semi-final, live on BBC Two and this website at 0815 GMT. Cheerio for now, though.

  2.  

    Andrew Anderson via text: "Fed result shows what's wrong with tie-breaks. Shouldn't be possible to win if you break fewer times than your opponent."

  3.  

    Phil Hakim on Twitter: "Tsonga vs Federer is always absolute thrilling. Shame he will be going out to Andy Murray."

  4.  

    Andrew from Newcastle: "Great show of determination from Federer in the 5th. Problem for Murray is that one 5 setter is not enough to tire out a player at the top these days. As such I don't see the comparative lengths of their QFs being relevant on Friday. Looking forward to it!!!"

  5.  

    Stephanie Siu on Twitter: "Seriously impressed with the tennis played in this match. Really hope previously lesser-challenged Murray is up to it."

  6. 1225: 

    Roger Federer smiling as he talks about his recovery time before playing Andy Murray in the semi-finals of the Australian Open on Friday: "I've got to recover a little but I'm going to be fine - I'm young you know, I recover quick! I'm looking forward to the match, its going to be tough, had a great year last year, winning first Grand Slam and Olympic gold. He is a great guy and a great player."

  7. 1222: 

    Roger Federer talking to Jim Courier on court after his five-set Australian Open quarter-final win over Jo-Wilfried Tsonga: "It was a tough close for sure but whole match was tough, every set could have come the other way and you never know what Jo is going to come up with. I feel a bit lucky to come through but feel played some great tennis and Jo did too."

  8.  
    GAME, SET AND MATCH- Roger Federer beats Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 6-3

    He couldn't? Could he? Tsonga, I mean. Surely he's not going to break here? At 15-30 the comeback is on, but Fed keeps finding his backhand - I know the feeling Jo-Wilfried - and ruthlessly takes the next two points. That's match-point number five and, this time, he takes it... following a big serve into the net, firing down a couple of keen volleys and finishing things off with an overhead.

    Federer will play Andy Murray in the semi-finals of the Australian Open on Friday, and you can see it live on BBC Two at 0815 GMT.

  9.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 5-3 Tsonga

    What a game this is! Fed is only really swinging at these at first but Tsonga makes enough of a mess of things to leave himself in big trouble at 15-40 and facing two match-points. Somehow he raises his game to save himself, repeating the trick for a third time with an audacious backhand volley at full stretch to reach an attempted cross-court winner from Fed. Tsonga keeps hitting winners, but keeps making mistakes, and he is soon facing a fourth match-point, saved when Fed flops into the net. Tsonga is going down fighting here, and he eventually holds out... Fed will still serve for the match next but don't take anything for granted folks.

  10.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 5-2 *Tsonga

    Oh dear. Tsonga ill-advisedly tries his own drop-shot, which Fed runs down to despatch a winner. Silly, silly boy - you can't be giving cheap points like that away now. Fed is still full of confidence despite that missed opportunity last time out, and he easily holds to move within one game of the semi-finals. The crowd are making one heck of a din.

  11.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 4-2 Tsonga

    Ouch. Fed is being a bully now, picking on Tsonga's awkward backhand and racing to 0-30. It's make or break for Tsonga, who responds with a forehand winner - he had to. Then comes one of the most amazing shots you will ever see, with Fed digging out a slice backhand drop shot that nicks the net and dies. Tsonga comes thundering in and gets nowhere near it, ending up running into Fed's side of the court and practically behind the baseline. A shot of genius, that one, and it also brings up two break points - which, in the circumstances, might as well be match-points. The man is human, though, because he indulges in a drive volley on the next point and makes a right old mess of it. Tsonga is fighting for his life and he knows it, battering down forehand after forehand to save the second break point too. He goes on to hold, through pure attrition. It would have been curtains if he had lost that game.

  12.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 4-1 *Tsonga

    Tsonga comes out all guns blazing but Fed is not going to give any ground. No way. His only setback comes when he dumps a forehand volley into the net at 40-15 - Tsonga is soon heading for his chair again and, no, he does not jog there this time.

  13.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 3-1 Tsonga

    Every mistake at this stage of the match is a potentially crucial one, and it is Tsonga who makes them here, losing focus for a moment and finding himself 0-30 down. A big serve keeps him alive but then Fed is in and on the money, with Tsonga challenging through HawkEye in vain. That's the first break of the fifth set - the crowd are on their feet and Rog is clenching his fist and howling at the moon. That could be massive.

  14.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 2-1 *Tsonga

    Again, a routine hold, despite Tsonga's best efforts to mix things up with his returns. The seventh seed decides to jog back to his chair at the the changeover, perhaps to show Fed how fresh he still is?

  15.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 1-1 Tsonga

    Tsonga does not have things all his own way here and Fed even has a sniff at deuce, but the Frenchman always has a big serve or two to call on and he gets himself out of trouble before an ace, his 15th of the match, sees him hold.

  16.  

    New York Times tennis correspondent Chris Clarey on BBC Radio 5 live Sports Extra's web commentary: "We are entering a zone where Federer is vulnerable. His five set record is not very good. He didn't play a lot of five set matches at his peak."

  17.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 1-0 *Tsonga

    Right folks, are you ready for this fifth-set shoot-out? Federer is, and keeps Tsonga at arm's length to hold out. He has been broken five times already tonight, so he will be happy with that.

  18.  
    GAME AND FOURTH SET- *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 3-6 Tsonga

    The answer is YES. Fed gives him something to think about with a glorious backhand winner to move 15-30 up but he makes a mess of his next two shots leaving Tsonga to serve for the set... one booming delivery later, he has it in the bag. Andy Murray, who is waiting for the winner in the semi-finals, will be a happy man because this match is going the distance. After almost three hours on court, we are into a fifth set.

  19.  

    The Armchair Pundit on Twitter: "A break isn't a break unless you hold straight after."

  20.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 3-5 *Tsonga

    The break points keep coming for Tsonga, thanks to some inspired hitting and an sensational cross-court passing shot winner. That gets him to 30-40 and he takes his chance, nailing a swinging backhand volley to go 5-3 up. Now, can he hold this time... Tsonga to serve for the fourth set next.

  21.  

    Will from Cambridge via text: "I'm not sure who's enjoying this more. The fans inside the Rod Laver or Andy Murray."

  22.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 3-4 Tsonga

    Here's a chance for Tsonga to take this set by the scruff of the neck, but he fails. Miserably. Down to the pressure, or down to Fed's power of recovery? A bit of both, I'd wager, but Tsonga's backhand is not up to scratch and his all-or-nothing approach brings him the latter on this occasion. We are back on serve in this fourth set.

    "How many times has Tsonga let Federer back in? Too many," says Alastair Eykyn on BBC Radio 5 live Sport's Extra's web commentary.

  23.  

    Kate C on Twitter: "You may think it a disadvantage for Murray to play earlier but the longer this goes on, the more this plays into Murray's hands."

  24.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 2-4 *Tsonga

    Who wants a fifth set? Andy Murray for sure. And Tsonga does too. He might just get one too. He keeps nibbling away at the Fed serve, and pegs him back from 40-15 to deuce. Even a big Fed first serve does not halt Tsonga's momentum and he soon earns a break chance when he comes out on top in an exchange of cross-court forehands. Fed is rattled and Tsonga knows it, going for his throat on his next return - crucially off a Fed second serve - bringing a stray forehand from the Swiss. Fed has won only one point off eight second serves in the fourth set, and Tsonga is clearly making the most of them.

  25.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 2-3 Tsonga

    Tsonga needs his serve to be rock-solid here and it is exactly that. Fed still has a pop, of course, but no joy for the four-time champ. These two have been on court for more than two-and-a-half hours now and they could be here for a good while longer.

  26.  

    Andrew from Newcastle via text: "To hold your serve from 0-40 is impressive in any circumstances. To do it when you need to win the set against Roger Federer is stunning tennis and self-belief."

  27.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 2-2 *Tsonga

    Tsonga play defensive? Not on your nelly! He turns up the heat on the Fed serve this time, banging out that forehand time and time again, and bringing up two break-points with a boomer right on to the baseline. That's as good as it gets, though, because Fed gets into him immediately, working him round the court and squeezing out the errors that see him to safety. We are still on serve in this fourth set.

  28.  

    Dennis Ethan on Twitter: "Tsonga please no need to come onto the net just play defensive. Losing a lot of points."

  29.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 1-2 Tsonga

    Tsonga hanging on by the skin of his teeth here, slipping to 0-40 and three break-points when his backhand lets him down again. Even his net-play cannot save him, thanks to the ferociousness of Fed's groundstrokes. It's a long way back from there but Tsonga is up for the fight with an ace helping him claw his way back to deuce and another big serve keeping him alive when Fed forces a fourth break point. Tsonga is still battling, though, and his 13th ace of the night sees him hold - and he will not want any more scares like that.

    "To give Roger daylight in the fourth set would have been potentially fatal," says New York Times tennis correspondent Chris Clarey on BBC Radio 5 live Sports Extra's web commentary.

  30.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 1-1 *Tsonga

    Easy does it for Fed too, who has got that semi-final in his sights now. His serve does not have the same power or punch as Tsonga's but the Frenchman is still not able to do much with it.

  31.   
    BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

    David Law on BBC Radio 5 live Sport's Extra's web commentary on Federer's challenge in the tie break: "Tsonga really had a chance. He was unlucky. The hawkEye decision was obviously the right one and a pivotal decision."

  32.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 0-1 Tsonga

    So, if Tsonga IS going to win this match, he is going to have to do it the hard way. He makes short work of his latest service game, though, holding to love.

    A timely reminder that whoever wins this match will face Britain's Andy Murray in the semi-final and the good news is that you will be able to watch that match live on BBC Two at 8.15 GMT on Friday.

  33.  
    GAME AND THIRD SET- Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 7-6 (7-4) Tsonga

    What a tie-break this turns into. Fed comes racing out of his chair and goes on the attack to again move a mini-break up. It doesn't last long, though because Tsonga stretches to put away a forehand volley to put us back on serve. From there, Fed takes command. HawkEye helps him out when he challenges a call and sees the ball is out not in, then Tsonga helps him out when he runs round a backhand and leaves Fed an open court to fire down a smooth backhand winner. That's two set-points, and Fed only needs one of them when Tsonga's backhand volley flies wide.

  34.  

    Susan B via Text: "I don't really care who wins, just make sure you tire each other out. You're doing a good job so far."

  35.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 6-6 (3-3) Tsonga

    Both men make a mess of things early in this tie-break, first Tsonga with the flimsiest of backhand volleys into the net to concede the mini-break, then Fed with a disastrous drive volley that ends up in the same place for the mini break-back. They are level at 3-3 at the changeover.

  36.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 6-6 Tsonga

    Another big game, and another belter. Fed is an angry man at 30-all when a forehand is called out - HawkEye shows it was the correct call too - and he is still cursing when the next serve comes down. His return flies out and we are heading for another tie-break, and a particularly pivotal one at that.

  37.  

    New York Times tennis correspondent Chris Clarey on BBC Radio 5 live Sports Extra's web commentary: "Tsonga prefers Wimbledon but this tournament holds the best memories for him. He has the emotional memory and the muscle memory of how to win on this court."

  38.  

    Willie Currie on Twitter: "Murray will be loving this. Possible 5 sets on the cards with Fed and Tsonga."

  39.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 6-5 *Tsonga

    Alarm bells start ringing for Fed as he lets Tsonga open up a 0-30 lead but then the Frenchman's suspect backhand takes over. It is the Swiss second seed who takes the next four points without having to work that hard for them, and he allows himself a quick clench of a fist as he goes back to his seat for the changeover. Tsonga to serve to stay in the third set next.

  40.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 5-5 Tsonga

    No need to debate how well Tsonga is serving - he holds to love in the blink of an eye. Crash, bang, wallop is probably the best way to describe it.

  41.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 5-4 *Tsonga

    A bit of debate from the 5 live Sports Extra commentary team about how well Fed is serving - his stats of points won on first (79%) and second serve (61%) are lower than his previous matches, but then he is facing his toughest opponent so far. A fifth ace helps him hold here.

  42.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 4-4 Tsonga

    Right, we're getting to the crunch time of this third set, and potentially the match too. Any wobbles? Not from Jo-Wilfried... he racks up his ninth ace as he holds with ease. Fed is going to have to wait for his opportunity, if he gets one at all.

  43.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 4-3 *Tsonga

    I'm not sure what Tsonga mutters in French when he sees a Fed backhand winner zip past him down the line, but it might as well be "too good". A Fed ace, his fourth of the match, is just as convincing but this third set is still too tight to call.

  44.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 3-3 Tsonga

    Tsonga might be struggling with his backhand but his forehand is still doing a LOT of damage, pounding down any Fed thoughts of resistance here. No break points for the Swiss here.

  45.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 3-2 *Tsonga

    Tsonga's serve has been under pressure in every game of this third set so far but Fed has settled down in comparison. He races away with the first three points and, although he is not perfect - stooping to put a backhand into the net - he will probably be happy with the way he is serving.

  46.  

    Ray Bellwhiff on Twitter: "Tsonga is a big game player. Can take it to the top 4 better than anybody outside that group. Makes him very dangerous."

  47.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 2-2 Tsonga

    Every point is worth fighting for at the moment, especially at 30-all. As Alastair Eykyn points out on BBC Radio 5 live Sports Extra, Fed is trying to meet the Tsonga serve early and he is getting some joy out of it, like the fizzing backhand return winner that gets him to deuce.

    Both players are going for it actually, giving us plenty of entertaining attacking tennis, although I am not sure Tsonga will agree when he dumps a backhand into the net - that's his 17th unforced error on that flank. Another mistake by the Frenchman brings up another break point for Fed but Tsonga rescues himself with a classic one-two of big serve and pin-point forehand missile into the corner. Then comes an ace, and then comes another big winner to hold. Cracking stuff.

  48.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 2-1 *Tsonga

    Wow. Tsonga responds in style though, and he is soon pumping his fist to celebrate the break-back. Immediately going on the attack, he launches a furious attack to bring mistakes out of Federer's racquet - the ball is suddenly attracted to the tramlines on either side of Tsonga rather than in court. Fed looked a bit rattled there.

  49.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 2-0 Tsonga

    Tsonga suddenly shaky at 0-30 and Rog steps things up, chasing down everything the seventh seed can throw at him before being clawed back to 30-all. That's not the end, though, far from it. Fed changes tactics - chipping a backhand and following it into the net to put away the overhead. So, break-point Fed, and he takes it too when he almost chops Tsonga's head off with a jet-powered backhand. Jo-Wilfried gets a racquet on it at the net, but cannot get the ball back over. Breathless stuff, and first blood in set three to Fed.

  50.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 1-0 *Tsonga

    Things are hotting up on Rod Laver Arena then - we have got a match-and-a-half on our hands here. Fed moves 40-up in his first service game of the third set and the two players have now won 67-points a piece tonight, a sign of how close things are. Tsonga takes the next rally when Fed shanks a forehand but the game is gone when Frenchman cannot read a high-bouncing backhand

  51.  

    Jonathan Chase on Twitter: "Federer really seems to bring the best out of Tsonga. Perhaps he should be his coach... "

  52.  
    GAME AND SECOND SET- *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 Tsonga

    Tsonga starts with an ace and sees a big Fed backhand fly long on the next point before a sloppy shot from the Swiss finds the net. That brings up three set points and, although Tsonga is wild with a forehand on his next point, a big serve sees him through. One-set all - would anyone like to pick a winner? No, me neither.

  53.  

    Jimmy Hosker on Twitter: "Is Tsonga gonna topple the mighty Swiss tennis king? I think it might be on the cards... "

  54.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 4-5 *Tsonga

    At 15-30 up, Tsonga is threatening to see out the second set without needing to serve but he sees the ball come off his frame rather than the strings when he attacks on the next point and Fed is back in the game at 30-all. From there, he holds out, but we have got an awfully big game for both men coming up. Tsonga to serve for the second set.

  55.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 3-5 Tsonga

    Just what Tsonga needed at this stage of the set - another easy hold to love. Fed is making too many mistakes as he tries to get to grips with the Frenchman's serve and it is not happening for him at the moment.

    Whoever wins this match will face Britain's Andy Murray in the semi-final and the good news is that you will be able to watch that match live on BBC Two at 8.15 GMT on Friday. Will Murray be up against Fed or Tsonga though?

  56.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 3-4 *Tsonga

    At long, long last, something other than a routine hold of serve in this second set. Tsonga fires down a H-U-G-E forehand winner to get to 15-all and then a net-cord falls in his favour to put him 15-30 up. He is soon yelling in frustration when he dumps a backhand into the net but is bouncing again when a Fed forehand flies out because this is his first break point of the second set. He takes it too, after a ferocious exchange where both players go hell for leather ends with a Fed backhand flying into the tramlines.

    Up until the start of this match, Fed had not dropped serve all tournament - he has now been broken twice.

  57.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 3-3 Tsonga

    Ditto with Tsonga. Again, Fed is always on the back-foot and fails to pick up so much as a point.

  58.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 3-2 *Tsonga

    No sign of Fed blinking here. He shanks a backhand a mile out but otherwise Tsonga is outgunned and, when he does get a chance to open up, far too tentative. The seventh seed wastes a chance to fire down a big forehand and that is another game gone.

  59.  

    Adam Plumpton on Twitter: "If Tsonga keeps his cool he can still win this."

  60.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 2-2 Tsonga

    This second set definitely belongs to the server so far. We've just seen another quickfire service game, with Tsonga banging down his fourth ace of the night to hold to love. Who will blink first?

  61.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 2-1 *Tsonga

    Tsonga is coming in to feed at the net when Fed is serving too, and gets some success when he puts away an instinctive backhand volley. Otherwise, it's business at usual on the Swiss serve.

  62.  
    *Federer 7-6 (7-4) 1-1 Tsonga

    That very first service game aside, Tsonga has served solidly throughout and he keeps coming into the net to finish points off quickly. It's a tactic that is working well and he holds in double-quick time.

  63.  

    Nick Wall on Twitter: "You just can't give Federer a sniff in a tie-break. Set was over from the first point."

  64.  
    Federer 7-6 (7-4) 1-0 *Tsonga

    Fed started the first set on fire and he makes a swift start to the second too. He comes into the net to put away an overhead to seal a comfortable hold.

  65.  

    David Law commentating on the BBC Sport website:"Tsonga does not always cope with adversity well. I'm not convinced he will be better in the second set."

  66.  
    GAME AND FIRST SET- Federer 7-6 (7-4) Tsonga

    Job done for Fed, and the first set is in the bag. He opens up a 5-2 lead in this tie-break when Tsonga wrongly challenges a Fed forehand that has been called in - the HawkEye replay shows it was the closest of calls, but the correct one. Tsonga is lucky to hang on to his serve again on the next two points, with Fed making the wrong choice with the court at his mercy and soon seeing a forehand fly past him. That takes us to 5-4 and, after a big Fed serve brings up a couple of set-points, he takes his first opportunity when Tsonga flops a backhand into the net.

  67.  
    Federer 6-6 (4-2) Tsonga

    Not the greatest start to this tie-break by Tsonga, but he is still in this tie-break. Fed gets the mini-break on the first point after a big first serve is called out when it would have been an ace - and then draws mistakes out of Tsonga to move 3-0 up. That's the cue for the Frenchman to come into the net to take the next two points but he is sent scurrying around the baseline at 3-2 down and is left berating the blue surface as he slips to let Fed tidy up. The Swiss leads 4-2 at the changeover.

  68.  
    Federer 6-6 Tsonga

    Fed is not serving quite so ferociously but is still doing the job. Tsonga goes on the attack to win the first point with a big return but, from then on, Fed is in control. He holds out with an ace and it's tie-break time...

  69.  
    *Federer 5-6 Tsonga

    Bang! No way into the Tsonga serve here, with the Frenchman flinging down four missiles that Fed does well to get a racquet on, let alone a return in court. Another hold, to love.

  70.  
    Federer 5-5 *Tsonga

    Another shot straight out of the top drawer by Fed - this time a drive volley from near the baseline as he holds out to keep us guessing where this first set is going to end up. In a tie-break is my guess. Both players are on song now, and this is turning into quite a battle.

  71.  

    Kevin Roberts on Twitter: "You would think after that epic Tsonga come back at Wimbledon in 2011, he would have had a better record against Federer since."

    Alexi Hastings on Twitter: "Tsonga's heavy hitting and athleticism would trouble Fed if the game weren't already won - mentally the Swiss has this one."

    James Crawford on Twitter: "Could be huge for Murray if Tsonga can win this first set. Don't see him winning the match but it could be a long one!"

  72.  
    *Federer 4-5 Tsonga

    Sometimes Fed plays shots that have you on your feet and shouting out loud. Then you realise you are in your office and everyone is looking at you. He pulls one of those out of the bag right here, somehow smashing a Tsonga smash as it bounced over him on the baseline. Tsonga, understandably, did not expect to see that one coming back. Sadly for the Swiss, he follows that supreme shot up with a couple of stinkers, wasting his break point with a flop into the net and dumping a forehand long under pressure from Tsonga's swinging serve. The Frenchman holds and Fed will serve to stay in the first set next.

  73.  
    Federer 4-4 *Tsonga

    Any more inroads to be made on the Fed serve? Erm, no. Tsonga's first return ends up in the crowd, bringing a handy catch from a bloke in the second tier. The Frenchman is not holding back with any of his shots but he is not accurate or consistent enough to cause the Swiss more problems this time.

  74.  
    *Federer 3-4 Tsonga

    Tsonga is into his stride now, bouncing round the court and banging down some big old deliveries. He is into the net to hold out with an overhead, and he is also ahead for the first time in this match. Fed's forehand was fantastic in the first four or five games, but it has begun to wobble of late.

  75.  
    Federer 3-3 *Tsonga

    A slack start on serve for Fed this time, including a sloppy forehand that drifts long. Suddenly Tsonga is 0-30 up and scenting another break-back chance, but he is pegged back by a couple of swinging first serves. A deft volley gets the Frenchman to deuce and he follows that up with his biggest forehand of the match to bring up another break-back chance. This time he takes it, too, watching another Fed forehand fly out. We are all-square again in the first set, and back on serve.

    "Tsonga is cranking the power up now," says David Law on BBC Radio 5 live Sports Extra. "When he gets it right, that gives him the opportunity to take the initiative away from Federer."

  76.  
    *Federer 3-2 Tsonga

    A routine hold for Tsonga, which is just what the doctor ordered for the Frenchman. Fed is still fancying himself to bang out some big forehands, though, and at 40-0 down he does exactly that, smacking down a dream of a winner from the back of the court. That's the only point he wins in this game, but it was a glorious one.

  77.  

    Oskie on Twitter: "Fed will always have his afterburners ready when he needs them. Against Tsonga on hard court? More than enough to win in 4 sets."

  78.  
    Federer 3-1 *Tsonga

    Tsonga's first sniff, with a big backhand down the line and right on to the baseline getting him to 30-all. Then comes Fed's first mistake, with a mistimed backhand that is completely shanked. A first break-back point for Tsonga comes and goes when he is wrong-footed horribly but another Fed error gives him a second break chance. Can he take it? No. He dumps a backhand into the net instead. From there, Fed cleans up - but that was our first sign that this is not going to be one-way traffic for the four-time champ.

    "Tsonga cannot afford to waste those sort of opportunities, but at least he is going for his shots" says David Law on BBC Radio 5 live Sports Extra. "He needs to stay with Federer in this first set."

  79.  
    *Federer 2-1 Tsonga

    Tsonga does indeed dig in, and he is on the scoreboard. Fed still slaps down one fizzing forehand that stops the Frenchman in his tracks, but otherwise the seventh seed's serve is big enough to see him through.

  80.  
    Federer 2-0 *Tsonga

    Fed is flying already, firing down some ferocious forehands when Tsonga gets a racquet to his serve. He holds to love and the pattern of this match so far is that, if there is a rally, Fed wins the point. A big game for Tsonga coming up, otherwise he can almost wave this first set goodbye.

  81.  
    *Federer 1-0 Tsonga

    This is some start for the Swiss supremo. Fed is straight into the Tsonga serve, biting a chunk off it with some vicious returns, and giving Jo-Wilfried all sorts of problems. Tsonga comes into the net once to put a volley away but otherwise he is scruffy at the net and he is broken when a loose one sprays into the tramlines.

  82. 0843: 

    Here we go then. Tsonga to serve first...

  83.  

    Ehren Smith on Twitter: "Am expecting the old master to win comfortably in 4 to set up another Federer vs Murray semi.

    Stewart Mills on Twitter: "Smooth progress for Fed but has he got it in the tank to beat Tsonga, Murray and Nole to the title? I REALLY want to say yes."

    Sean Randles โ€on Twitter: "Can see 5 sets being played, Federer for the win!"

  84. 0840: 

    Grey seems to be the colour of choice on Rod Laver Arena this morning - Sir Alex Ferguson would not approve. To be fair, Fed has got luminous pink laces too - no problem spotting those.

  85.  

    A Tsonga win would be something of a shock, but not on the scale of Sloane Stephens' victory over Serena Williams earlier on day 10. Stephens, 19, will face Victoria Azarenka in the semi-finals after the defending champion overcame a spirited Svetlana Kuznetsova in straight sets.

  86.  

    Andy Scott on Twitter: "5 set epic lasting 5 hours with Tsonga going through. Best case scenario for Andy."

  87. 0836: 

    Tsonga in three? Fed in four? A thriller in five? I want to know how you see this one going folks... ? Tweet the commentary using the hashtag #bbctennis or text us (in the UK) on 81111. Make sure you put YOUR NAMES on those texts though, because I will call a double fault if you don't.

    To continue in tennis terms, don't forget you can also follow this match on the new BBC app for iPhones and iPod touch devices. It's ace.

  88. 0835: 

    Tsonga is first to be introduced but Fed gets the louder reception from the crowd. The 15,000-capacity stadium is not quite full yet, but it is not far off.

    We are moments away from the start of the final men's quarter-final of the 2013 Australian Open. Give this page a refresh and you will be able to listen to web-only commentary on BBC Radio 5 live Sports Extra.

  89. 0834: 

    Here they come. Fed and Tsonga are currently on that long walk from their dressing room to the Rod Laver Arena.

  90. 0833: 

    Tsonga is in pretty good shape too, mind, and has dropped just one set on his way to the last eight. The big-serving seventh seed, who conquered Federer in the quarter-finals at Wimbledon in 2011, will not be overawed by his illustrious opponent either - because he knows what will happen if he is.

    "I've got a lot of respect for Roger. He's just an incredible tennis player, an example for many people," Tsonga said. "I have respect for him outside of the court and, on the court, I have to - how do you say - unrespect him?

    "Because if you respect him too much, then for sure you lose."

    Fed holds an 8-3 winning record in meetings between the two, although Tsonga's last victory in 2012 came via a walk-over.

  91. 0828: 

    Fed is a four-time champion at Melbourne Park, and has made the semi-finals at least on each of his last nine visits. This is his 35th successive Grand Slam quarter-final too.

    All impressive stuff, but the stats don't stop there. The 31-year-old second seed is the only player not to have had his serve broken in this year's tournament, which shows his sheer consistency. And it is definitely a case of steady as he goes - he does not figure in the top 20 for number of aces served, but then he doesn't really have to.

  92. 0824: 

    Yep, Murray made short work of France's Jeremy Chardy, polishing him off in three sets that took him less than two hours to complete. You would think that Chardy's compatriot Tsonga will put up slightly sterner resistance against Fed, but the Swiss is the sort of form that makes him hard to bet against.

  93. 0820: 

    Morning all. The UK woke up to the news that Andy Murray is into the semi-final of the Australian Open. But who will he face there? We are about to find out... (here's a clue: it's either Roger Federer or Jo-Wilfried Tsonga).

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