World number one Roger Federer survived a difficult time against Arnaud Clement to the semifinals of the Estoril Open on Friday.
The world number one beat in three sets 7-6 (9 / 7) 6-2, but had to avoid a set point in the first game before securing its passage.
Federer had lost his first serve to love before fighting back to force a tie-break, that Clement could have closed, only to fire a forehand long.
It was the last chance for the world number 83 is Federer, who is only six weeks to break Pete Sampras’s record of 286 weeks at number one, went through the gears.
“I had a bad start in the first game, falling to 00-30 after playing a great passing shot,” said Federer. “I missed a couple of chances in the 3-3.
“I do not play beautiful tennis. I had to play it safe, it’s not something I’m used to doing. I have always fought against it and today you can see that. ”
Federer will meet fourth-seeded Albert Montanes in the last four after the Spanish took an hour and 30 minutes to beat Pablo Cuevas of Uruguay 6-4, 6-3.
On the other side of the draw fifth seed Guillermo Garcia-Lopez moved after his compatriot Alberto Martin retired with a stomach illness while trailing 6-0 2-0.
Garcia-Lopez will play Frederico Gil local hope in the last four after winning a match of all Portuguese-Rui Machado against wildcard 4-6 7-6 (7 / 1) 6-3.