Nishikori, who had won only two matches in 15 meetings with the 12-time major victor, broke for 1-0 in the fourth but was broken straight back. Federer is now 266-3 after winning the first two sets. 'Against Anderson he has won all four matches and never dropped a set, so I expect him to comfortably get through.
The first hiccup surfaced at the start of the second set with Anderson breaking the Federer serve and ending that run of holds. Not just an experience, but a challenge that I've set for myself. You need that mindset against Roger.
The Swiss walked off the court after defeat at Wimbledon for the first time in two years but it was in unfamiliar surroundings; SW19 authorities scheduled him on No 1 Court for the first time since his 2015 quarter-final against Gilles Simon.
Federer previously won 34 straight sets between the third round in 2005 and the final in 2006 but records were the last thing on Federer's mind as he just thinking of making it through to the last four unscathed.
Anderson held his nerve with his relentless and powerful serve win the fourth and send the rip-roaring contest into an unlikely fifth and deciding set. I had moments where I was great, I felt like I was reading his serve, other moments where I don't know where the hell I was moving to.
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Fans have been dancing in the town's streets and chanting It's Coming Home following England's wins earlier in the tournament. First knockout win for 10 years. "We keep looking to break the barriers down".
The South African is through to the last eight for the first time, and he said: 'Playing somebody like Roger Federer is going to be a great experience.
And, despite his two-set advantage, the 20-times grand slam victor never looked entirely comfortable, despite having never previously lost a set to Anderson in four other meetings.
Djokovic, seeded 12th, incurred a warning for throwing his racket and was clearly frustrated, complaining of "double standards" when Nishikori was not punished for a racket throw.
"He said he thinks it damaged the court". I think that's not fair.
"That was very important", he added. "I'm pleased I'll be staying there right now".