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Qualifying begins: 26 June

The Draw: 30 June

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Order of Play: 2 July

Championships begin: 3 July


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Monday, 10 July 2017 19:57 PM BST
Raonic digs deep to win five-setter
No.6 seed pushed all the way by Alexander Zverev, winning 4-6, 7-5, 4-6, 7-5, 6-1 READ MORE

Milos Raonic twice battled back from a set down against Alexander Zverev to book his place in the quarter-finals for the third time, clinching a 4-6, 7-5, 4-6, 7-5, 6-1 victory in three hours, 23 minutes.

The No.6 seed will face Roger Federer in the last eight, a repeat of the 2016 semi-final where the Canadian prevailed to reach his first Grand Slam final.

Zverev, playing in the second week of a Grand Slam for the first time, will enter the ATP top 10 next week on the basis of his performance at The Championships, but the 20-year-old will rue a missed chance to break at the start of the fourth as Raonic twice levelled with the German serving for a tie-break.

Raonic was not at his best – or, perhaps, not allowed to be – out on No.2 Court, with Zverev unflinching the face of his power, picking off the onrushing Canadian with low drives and fine angled passes.

He produced six double faults and struggled at the net, the foundation of his run to the final a year ago, winning 40 of 67 points after coming forward. With Zverev showing no fear in the face of his serve, the 26-year-old was forced to switch to Plan B.

“I played into what he wanted to see, what he was prepared for,” Raonic conceded. “I kept going around him too much. He's got a long wingspan. I kept going too much at the same speeds.

“It's about just keep mixing it up. I think I have a great ability with my serve. If the other guy isn't able to get into a rhythm, it's going to be not a fun day for the other person. I've got to always be looking at it from that perspective.”

Zverev regrouped after dropping the second set but Raonic was far more precise after clinching the fourth before running away with the decider as the shadows lengthened across the All England Club, a gritty win on a tough day at the office.

If the other guy isn't able to get into a rhythm, it's going to be not a fun day for the other person

- Milos Raonic

“That was the most important thing,” Raonic said of the victory, pretty, gritty or otherwise. “There were a lot of moments where it didn't look necessarily to be going my way. I just tried to stick around, tried to show in a way that I just wanted it badly, if not more. It paid off. I've been in that situation definitely more times than he has. It just came together nicely for me.”

Raonic knows he will have to be better on Wednesday when he faces Federer, whose comeback since last year’s six-month hiatus following their semi-final showdown has cemented his place at the top of the tennis pantheon in the Canadian’s eyes.

“Roger's been the best player this year, hands down, when he's been on court,” Raonic said. “But it's not about six months or whatnot, it comes down to Wednesday, one day. So I just got to try to find a way to try to be better on that day.

“I feel like as a shot-for-shot player I'm better,” he added, comparing his game’s progression in the past 12 months. “I just feel like I'm still trying to find that rhythm that I had last year, playing a lot of matches consistently. It doesn't mean it can't come, but I've just got to be sharp each and every point during the next match.”

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