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Federer on the march as Cilic ramps up Queen's Club bid


By Robert Jones

Roger Federer remains on course for a ninth title at the Gerry Weber Open in Halle after defeating Florian Mayer in the quarter-finals. The 35-year-old has found his feet on grass at the most successful tournament of his career after his shock early loss to Tommy Haas in Stuttgart.

He needed just an hour and six minutes to see off German Mayer 6-3 6-4, serving 11 aces and taking two of his 12 break points.

In the semi-finals, Federer will face Karen Khachanov, who won the battle of the young Russians against Andrey Rublev 7-6 (10-8) 4-6 6-3.

France's Richard Gasquet is also through after a 6-1 3-6 6-1 victory over Robin Haase.

Meanwhile, Marin Cilic set up a semi-final clash with Gilles Muller at Queen's Club as the Croatian powered to a 6-4 7-5 victory over Donald Young.

Having lifted the Queen's trophy in 2012, Cilic fancies his chances of adding a second title as the highest ranked player left in the draw following the shock exits of Andy Murray, Stan Wawrinka and Milos Raonic.

The World No.7 has yet to drop a set in three matches en route to his fourth semi-final appearance at the Wimbledon warm-up event in west London.

Cilic, who also finished as Queen's runner-up in 2013, was pushed hard by Young, but the former US Open champion fired 11 aces to see off the American World No.55 in one hour and 26 minutes.

"I'm playing really well this week. I'm feeling great on the court," said Cilic.

Luxembourg's Muller is through to his first Queen's semi after defeating 2010 champion Sam Querrey 6-4 7-6 (7-5).

Petra Kvitova secured the best win of her comeback so far, beating Kristina Mladenovic to reach the semi-finals of the Aegon Classic in Birmingham.

The Czech was playing her fifth match since the stabbing she suffered at her home in Prostejov six months ago.

Kvitova's left hand is still not fully recovered but she has shown very encouraging form since returning at the French Open and defeated World No.12 Mladenovic 6-4 7-6 (7-5).

Kvitova was dominant for the majority of the match.

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