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Updated: January 19, 2011 20:34 IST

Federer beats Simon in five-set thriller

AP
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Switzerland's Roger Federer reacts during his second-round match against GIlles Simon of France. The Swiss came through in five-sets. Photo: AP
AP Switzerland's Roger Federer reacts during his second-round match against GIlles Simon of France. The Swiss came through in five-sets. Photo: AP

Defending champion Roger Federer survived a major scare at the Australian Open on Wednesday, beating Gilles Simon 6-2, 6-3, 4-6, 4-6, 6-3 in the second round.

For a while, it seemed like Simon, who had beaten Federer in their two previous meetings, would send the Swiss star packing out of a Grand Slam before the third round for the first time since the French Open in 2003 — a total of 31 majors.

But Federer, pumping his fist increasingly in celebration with each point in the final few games, broke Simon’s service in the sixth game of the deciding set to go up 4-2, held his service to go up 5-2. Simon won the next game to make it 5-3 but Federer served out the set and the match to advance to the third round.

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