Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Federer refuses to blame back injury

Roger Federer bowed out at the quarterfinal stage following a straight sets defeat by Rafael Nadal.
Roger Federer bowed out at the quarterfinal stage following a straight sets defeat by Rafael Nadal.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Rafael Nadal defated Roger Federer 6-4 6-2 in quarterfinal at Indian Wells
  • Nadal will play Tomas Berdych in the semifinals
  • Federer could lose World No.2 spot to Andy Murray
  • Maria Sharapova and Caroline Wozniacki into women's semifinals

(CNN) -- Roger Federer refused to blame an ongoing back problem after being dumped out at Indian Wells by long-term rival Rafael Nadal.

Federer, who could now drop to World No.3 should Andy Murray reach the final, was beaten 6-4 6-2 by the Spaniard.

The 31-year-old looked to be playing through the pain barrier during his last-16 win over compatriot Stanislas Wawrinka just 24 hours earlier.

But the 17-time grand slam winner did not use his back complaint as an excuse for his performance as his quest for a record fifth triumph at Indian Wells fell flat.

Federer, Nadal to renew rivalry

Rafael Nadal's injury heartache
In Krakow with the Radwanska sisters
Diego Maradona, the man who led Argentina to World Cup glory in 1986, showed off ball skills of a different kind as he enjoyed a few rallies with fellow countryman Juan Martin del Potro at the Dubai Open Wednesday. Diego Maradona, the man who led Argentina to World Cup glory in 1986, showed off ball skills of a different kind as he enjoyed a few rallies with fellow countryman Juan Martin del Potro at the Dubai Open Wednesday.
Holding court
HIDE CAPTION
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
>
>>
When Diego met del Potro When Diego met del Potro

"[It was the] same as against Stan. I mean, I could play," Federer told reporters.

"I'm happy to be out there and able to compete. But it's obviously a small issue."

Instead, Nadal avenged last year's semifinal defeat by the Swiss and took his record to 19-10 in matches against Federer.

But the manner of victory was not lost on Nadal, who was quick to acknowledge the limitations of his opponent.

"I played a fantastic first set, in my opinion. The second set was strange," said Nadal.

"The second set, I think Roger didn't fight as usual. He probably had some problems and he didn't feel comfortable enough to keep fighting.

"Both of us tried to play our best. I played much better than yesterday.

"My movements today were much, much better than yesterday, so I'm very happy for that, especially after a long match yesterday, to be able to compete well the next day."

Federer: Good to have Rafa back

Rising star inspired by Sampras
Tennis stars take on the quick fire quiz
American John Isner and Nicolas Mahut will forever be bonded together by their singles clash at Wimbledon in 2010 which became the longest match in tennis history.
American John Isner and Nicolas Mahut will forever be bonded together by their singles clash at Wimbledon in 2010 which became the longest match in tennis history.
The marathon men: An unlikely bromance
HIDE CAPTION
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
>
>>
The marathon men: An unlikely bromance The marathon men: An unlikely bromance

This was the earliest the pair had met in a regular tournament since 2004, when Nadal won their first meeting in the third round of the Sony Open Tennis in Miami.

The 26-year-old will now face Tomas Berdych in his eighth consecutive semifinal at Indian Wells.

The women's quarterfinals were blighted by injury after defending champion Victoria Azarenka and seventh seed Sam Stosur both pulled out with injury.

Djokovic, Azarenka extend unbeaten runs

Azarenka, ranked two in the world, was forced to withdraw with tendinitis and inflammation in her right foot and ankle.

"That's frustrating for me as a player, not knowing," Azarenka told reporters after revealing she is unsure of her recovery time.

"Sometimes you think, OK, well, I rest three days and I'm going to be fine with it. But when you don't know the healing process it's a little bit frustrating."

Stosur's calf injury gifted Germany's fourth seed Angelique Kerber a place in the last four where she will now play Caroline Wozniacki.

In the other semifinal, 2006 winner Maria Sharapova will face fellow Russian Maria Kirilenko.

It is the first time Kirlenko has made the final four at Indian Wells following wins over Agnieszka Radwanska and former Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
June 30, 2014 -- Updated 1135 GMT (1935 HKT)
When Agnieszka Radwanska refused to look her opponent in the eye after losing at Wimbledon, it raised more than eyebrows.
June 23, 2014 -- Updated 0114 GMT (0914 HKT)
It's 10 years since a teenage Maria Sharapova became the darling of Wimbledon's hallowed Center Court, launching herself as a star.
Rafael Nadal is still the "King of Clay" -- but his crown has slipped a bit, says CNN's Will Edmonds.
May 23, 2014 -- Updated 0746 GMT (1546 HKT)
He's regularly voted France's favorite famous person, but many of the nation's youth have "no idea" about his glorious sporting past
May 5, 2014 -- Updated 2359 GMT (0759 HKT)
British tennis player Elena Baltacha won 11 ITF Pro Circuit titles during her 16-year playing career.
The Ukrainian-born, British tennis star loses fight against liver cancer, just a few weeks after revealing that she was battling the disease.
April 29, 2014 -- Updated 1555 GMT (2355 HKT)
Five-time grand slam champion Martina Hingis has followed her mom into a coaching role, setting up a new tennis academy in Barcelona, Spain.
April 16, 2014 -- Updated 1238 GMT (2038 HKT)
Suisse's Belinda Bencic returns the ball to France's Alize Cornet during the second match of the Fed Cup first round tennis tie France vs Switzerland on February 8, 2014 at the Pierre de Coubertin stadium in Paris. AFP PHOTO / KENZO TRIBOUILLARD (Photo credit should read KENZO TRIBOUILLARD/AFP/Getty Images)
It's no easy matter becoming a world class tennis player. It's even harder when everyone (really -- everyone) is calling you the "new Martina Hingis."
April 2, 2014 -- Updated 1420 GMT (2220 HKT)
At the 2009 Australian Open, French men's tennis was the talk of the town.
April 15, 2014 -- Updated 1800 GMT (0200 HKT)
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - APRIL 14: Rafael Nadal of Spain sails a boat during day two of the ATP Monte Carlo Rolex Masters Tennis at Monte-Carlo Sporting Club on April 14, 2014 in Monte-Carlo, Monaco. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Rafael Nadal may be most at home on a clay tennis court, but he has always found comfort on the sea.
March 21, 2014 -- Updated 1107 GMT (1907 HKT)
Tennis star Venus Williams reveals how she is beating the autoimmune disease that derailed her career.
March 5, 2014 -- Updated 1014 GMT (1814 HKT)
After two decades dedicated to the game, Amelie Mauresmo wants a second life -- one away from tennis.
Rafael Nadal of Spain wipes his face after losing his men's final match against Stanislas Wawrinka of Switzerland during day 14 of the 2014 Australian Open at Melbourne Park on January 26, 2014 in Melbourne, Australia.
Almost five years to the day after reducing Roger Federer to tears at the Australian Open, Rafael Nadal shed a few in his own loser's speech.
ADVERTISEMENT