ROGER FEDERER clawed back from two sets down to turn back Julien Benneteau and reach the last 16 of the Wimbledon Championships.
The Swiss master was two points away from being sent packing in the fourth round but managed to extend the match and win it 4-6, 6-7(3), 6-2, 7-6(6), 6-1.
Federer was down 5-6 and 15-30 in the fourth but the Swiss simply couldn't be put away, the world No. 3 hitting a huge forehand to even it at 30 and surviving two deuces to take the set. Then it was all Federer in the fifth.
The former No. 1 next faces Xavier Malisse of Belgium, who also pulled off a huge win, 1-6, 7-6(5), 6-1, 4-6, 6-3, over Spanish 17th seed Fernando Verdasco.
"Oh, my God, it was brutal," Federer said after overcoming a two-set deficit for the eighth time in his career.
"Mentally, he's a rock. He's two sets down and he doesn't show anything. And after that, if your level is a little bit lower — right here, right now, he takes the opportunity," said Benneteau.
World No. 1 Novak Djokovic, 25, also needed to fight back from a shaky start, beating 33-year-old Czech Radek Stepanek 4-6, 6-2, 6-2, 6-2.
The Serbian top seed next takes on compatriot Viktor Troicki, who upset 15th seed Juan Monaco, 7-5, 7-5, 6-3.