Swiss tennis stars Roger Federer and Martina Hingis have been knocked out of the Key Biscayne tournament in Florida. Their elimination means there are no Swiss players left in the tournament.
Federer, who won his first career title at Milan in February, appeared out of his depth in his quarter-final match against Australian Patrick Rafter. The up-and-coming player from Basel allowed his opponent to break his serve a total of four times to control the match and coast to a 6-3, 6-1 victory.
Despite suffering from tendonitis in his right wrist, Rafter took just 56 minutes to dispose of the 24th-ranked Federer. From 3-3 on serve in the first set, Rafter dominated the match, ensuring Federer stood no chance of making it to the semi-finals.
"I played very well, very sharp," Rafter said. The 8th-seeded player now goes on to face the winner of the match between Andre Agassi and Ivan Ljubicic in the semi-final.
Earlier in the day, top-seeded defending champion Hingis saw her hopes of another tournament title dashed. She was defeated 6-3, 7-6 by arch-rival Venus Williams. It's the third time in four years the American has made it through to the final.
Williams took a strong 4-0 lead early in the first set, with Hingis letting a game point slip away in each of the first three games. The second set was more balanced, with both players obtaining four games.
Hingis then briefly held a set point at 6-5 in the tiebreaker, before losing 7-6.
A disappointed Hingis admitted afterwards that she had allowed the American to dominate the match. "She did everything, scoring the points and making the faults," Hingis said. " But if there had been a third set, I would have been in with a chance."
swissinfo with agencies