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Raonic spells 'trouble' again for Federer

MELBOURNE: Roger Federer has won 17 grand slam titles, Milos Raonic has only ever been to a grand slam fourth round twice previously.

At the start of the 2013 season, Federer had won 76 titles and more than $76 million in prize money. Raonic, three titles and just under $2 million.

Federer has won all three of their previous clashes, all in 2012. But the Swiss world number two and the giant Canadian are only too aware that sometimes pure statistics do not reflect the true nature of tennis.

In all three of their matches at Halle, Madrid and Indian Wells, the world number 15 had Federer on the ropes. So much so, Federer acknowledged that he won games he should have lost.

"I've had some tough matches with him in the past," Federer said of his expectations facing the 1.96-metres (6-foot-5) tall 22-year-old. "All of them went the distance. Some of them I should have lost, maybe one or two.

"Indian Wells, I felt like I was more in control than the other two. In Madrid I was in a lot of trouble. Halle was extremely close."

Raonic, who said earlier in the tournament that today's clash was the sort of match he needed to win to "kick down the door" to reach the top 10, added the experience of playing so well against Federer last year would be beneficial.

"I think I played well in the other ones," Raonic said. "I think I got pretty damn close the one time in Madrid. I got pretty close in Halle.

"I just know how to deal with it. I think I have a higher tolerance within myself and a higher belief within myself stepping up against Roger."

The winner of the clash will face a Frenchman in the quarter-finals, either seventh-seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga or ninth-seeded compatriot Richard Gasquet.



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