Fabulous Federer cruises into Basel quarter-finals
Roger Federer stayed in the hunt for an eighth Swiss Indoors Basel title in his hometown with an emphatic straight-sets victory over Benoit Paire on Thursday.
The top seed, eyeing a seventh title of the year after his Shanghai Masters triumph, put on another show for his adoring fans to ease into the quarter-finals with a 6-1 6-3 win.
Federer was a cut above the unseeded Paire, who showed flashes of his ability and made a fist of it in the second set, but endured a frustrating evening against the world number two.
The 19-time grand slam champion toyed with the Frenchman and did not face a solitary break point in a one-sided match which he won in just 57 minutes, setting up a meeting with Denis Shapovalov or Adrian Mannarino in the last eight.
A dominant Federer broke to love in the second game of the match to set the tone and again to lead 5-1, going on to secure another two breaks in the second set with an array of elegant groundstrokes in another routine win.
Juan Martin del Potro enhanced his chances of qualifying for the ATP Finals by ousting qualifier Julien Benneteau 6-4 6-4.
The fourth seed from Argentina was back in 47th in the Race to London just two months ago, but can move up to eighth spot with a tournament win in Basel following Pablo Carreno Busta's loss to Diego Schwartzman in the Vienna Open.
Defending champion Marin Cilic battled his way through in Basel with a 6-3 3-6 6-3 win over fellow Croatian Borna Coric.
Cilic will now take on Marton Fucsovics, who won the first three games of his second-round match before Leonardo Mayer retired due to illness.