Source: Agencies | 2013-2-17 | NEWSPAPER EDITION
DEFENDING champion Roger Federer suffered a shock 3-6. 5-7 defeat by Frenchman Julien Benneteau, who has yet to lift a tour title during his 13-year career, in the ABN AMRO World Tennis Tournament quarterfinals in Rotterdam on Friday.
The top seed struggled throughout with his first serve and was broken three times in the opening set.
Benneteau, 31, broke again early in the second set before the world No. 2 broke back. Federer had chances to break again in the 11th game but world No. 39 Benneteau managed to hold him off before clinching victory on his first match point as a backhand pass from the Swiss went out.
"If you lose your serve five times, like I did today, you can't win indoors," Federer told reporters. "Julien played great, created more chances than I did and fully deserved to win.
"I fought back at the end of the second set and had chances to take it into a third but that would have been more luck than I deserved."
Benneteau next meets fellow countryman Gilles Simon who put out Martin Klizan when the Slovak retired through injury while trailing 7-6 (6), 3-6, 0-3.