8.58amWhen Tsonga and Federer face each other, it's usually in the quarter-finals or semi-finals of a tournament. Not today though. Their 14th meeting will be contested at the last-16 stage, with the winner moving on to face Andy Murray in the quarter-finals.
9.00amThe two players are already on court to undergo their pre-match warm-up. This encounter should get started in just under 10 minutes time.
9.03amIt's been pretty routine stuff for either player since the start of the tournament. Neither man has dropped a set, and they have only been taken to a tie-break on three occasions. I've got a feeling that this match is going to be a lot more competitive...
9.04amRight then, the two players are ready. It will be Federer to serve first. Game on!
Tsonga *0-1 FedererIt's a fast start from Federer, but some aggressive play at the net from Tsonga keeps him in the game at 40-30. The Frenchman gets into the next rally, but he loops a backhand long and Federer has the first game.
Tsonga 0-2* FedererBREAK! Federer looks sharp this evening. He flicks a couple of marvelous shots over the net for 15-15 before pressuring Tsonga into a mistake for 15-30. The Frenchman gets back to 30-30, but a sublime backhand down the line sets up a Federer smash for break point, who converts the opportunity with a ruthless forehand down the line. Early momentum for the Swiss.
Tsonga *0-3 FedererI think that Tsonga has quickly realised that he can't play tentative tonight. Federer takes the first two points before Tsonga steps in to a forehand for 30-15. A return winner makes it 30-30, and despite failing to retrieve a Federer drop-shot, he gets to deuce. However, two more drop-shots in a row from the former world number one are too precise, and it's 3-0 to Federer in next to no time.
Tsonga 1-3* FedererTsonga is gifted 30-15 when Federer sprays a couple of forehands wide of the tramlines, but a thunderous forehand return earns him 30-30. Tsonga gets on the board with a big first serve, though, and that ought to give him a bit more confidence than he has been showing so far.
Tsonga *1-4 FedererFederer takes the serve-and-volley approach to quickly establish a 40-0 lead, but a backhand just misses the line. The Swiss remains untroubled, though, and a smash is out of the reach of Tsonga.
Tsonga 2-4* FedererThe former world number one continues on the attack in the sixth game of the match, but he has started to make a few errors to allow Tsonga to build a 40-15 lead. However, game point is sealed with a bit of magic from Tsonga, who flicks a half-volley expertly over the net.
Tsonga *2-5 FedererWhat a rally. The two players move each other around the court before Tsonga's attempted passing shot is dispatched by Federer at the net. It's the start of an easy hold for Federer, who has taken just 23 minutes to move one game away from the first set.
Tsonga 3-5* FedererTsonga looks in control of the game at 30-15, before Federer caresses a cross-court forehand over the net. However, Tsonga blasts down the first ace of the match to stop Federer in his tracks, with another big first serve taking the game.
Tsonga *3-6 FedererSET! Tsonga shows that he is beginning to warm to the task with a fine baseline winner, but more aggressive play from Federer opens up an advantage. A backline down the line sets up an easy conversion at the net to bring up two set points, and it's taken when Tsonga misses with a lob. That was a blistering first set from the Swiss.
Tsonga 3-6 1-0* FedererThe Frenchman needs a fast start to this set, and an excellent smash from the back of the court gets him on the way to 40-0. However, Federer piles the pressure on Tsonga with a volley for 40-30, but the former world number one nets from the baseline to allow Tsonga to edge ahead.
Tsonga *3-6 1-1 FedererIn the opening 38 minutes of this match, it has been the Federer of old. If he continues like this, it's going to be an uphill task for Tsonga. Federer holds comfortably to 15.
Tsonga 3-6 2-1* FedererTsonga is going to need that kind of luck if he wants to win this match. He catches the line with a winner, before the ball trickles over the net after clipping the cord. Federer has a sniff at 40-30, but Tsonga lights up the Rod Laver Arena after going on the attack to convert a forehand at the net. This is warming up...
Tsonga *3-6 2-2 FedererFederer continues his relentless attack on the net by easing to another love hold. He has already been to the net 23 times. Surely the influence of new coach Stefan Edberg?
Tsonga 3-6 3-2* FedererWozwers. After Tsonga nets on the opening point, Federer mixes up his play beautifully, drawing Tsonga into the net before wrong-footing the Frenchman with a forehand. However, what a response from Tsonga! Four huge serves in a row, which includes an ace down the middle, earns him the game and we remain on serve.
Tsonga *3-6 3-3 FedererWe shouldn't be that surprised that Federer is playing like he is, but we are, simply because he hasn't shown this level for a considerable amount of time. Three winners oozing with class take him to 40-0, before he works Tsonga into the corner to allow himself to volley the ball into the open court.
Tsonga 3-6 4-3* FedererA double fault from Tsonga gives Federer the opening point, before Federer flicks his 13th forehand winner of the match for a 0-30 advantage. The Frenchman responds by almost destroying the ball with two huge forehand winners into the corner for 30-30, and a net cord comes to Tsonga's aid to create game point. The number 10 seed is fighting hard, and he holds once more to remain ahead of the Swiss.
Tsonga *3-6 4-4 FedererThat's a stunning reaction from Federer at the net, who puts a volley away after the ball had clipped the net-cord. Another volley moves him to 40-0, but Tsonga clips the line with a return to earn a much-needed point on the Swiss player's serve. That's all that he is getting though. A Federer ace makes it 4-4.
Tsonga 3-6 5-4* FedererTsonga holds in much more comfortable fashion than the last few games, and Federer must serve to stay in the serve. You would expect him to do so, but Tsonga has nothing to lose in this upcoming game. He could come out firing on all cylinders...
Tsonga *3-6 5-5 FedererAnd so he does. Tsonga moves into court to put away a Sampras-esque smash for 15-15, but Federer but two accurate first serves help the Swiss to 40-15. The former world number one then moves in to smash a volley into the corner, and it's 5-5. Federer has lost just three points on serve during this set...
Tsonga 3-6 5-6* FedererBREAK! A crunching baseline winner gets Tsonga to 15-15, but Federer goes on the attack to set up the smash. Tsonga responds with a huge forehand into the corner, but the Frenchman frames a shot from the baseline, and Federer has break point! WOW! Tsonga delivers under pressure with a big ace out wide, but WOW x2! A backhand slice from Federer clips the net and trickles over! So unlucky for Tsonga. Federer takes the second break point when Tsonga nets, and the Swiss will serve for a 2-0 lead.
Tsonga 3-6 5-7* FedererSET! Perfection. Sheer perfection. Tsonga comes to the net but Federer lobs him with incredible accuracy. An ace and a big serve out wide bring up three set points, and a second service winner of the game sees Federer take the second set. This has been a simply stunning display so far.
Tsonga *3-6 5-7 1-1 FedererThe level of tennis has dropped at the start of this third set, but Federer still holds to 15. It's a weird atmosphere on Rod Laver, the crowd are almost silent. I'm sure that will change though.
Tsonga 3-6 5-7 1-2* FedererBREAK! Trouble for Tsonga. He plays a couple of lazy points, and it costs him. Federer has three break points, and he takes his first opportunity when the Frenchman nets a volley.
Tsonga *3-6 5-7 1-3 FedererTsonga could do with an immediate response, and he had a glimmer of a chance when forcing Federer to net at 15-15. However, that's as good as it gets for the number 10 seed, and a forehand winner and a perfectly-timed drop-shot helps seal the game. After just 88 minutes, Federer is three service holds away from the last eight.
Tsonga 3-6 5-7 2-3* FedererThat's impressive from Tsonga, who holds to 15 with three successive big serves. Tsonga hasn't played bad in this match, he's just been blown away by an irresistible performance from Federer. He'll be waiting if the Swiss's level drops off.
Tsonga *3-6 5-7 2-4 FedererOf course, that's a big if though. An ace down the middle and a wayward return from Tsonga give Federer 40-0, and another easy hold is sealed when Tsonga dumps a backhand return into the net.
Tsonga 3-6 5-7 3-4* FedererIncredible. Federer has 0-30 before outclassing Tsonga at the net, which leads to a outcry of frustration from Tsonga, which earns him a code violation warning too. The Frenchman is fired up now, though, and he saves all three break points! What resilience from Tsonga, who thunders down a huge forehand down the line to earn the most impressive of holds. He throws down his racquet in delight, or frustration, but however you look at it, the number 10 seed is pumped up. Interesting game coming up...
Tsonga *3-6 5-7 3-5 FedererHere we go. Tsonga catches the line with a forehand winner, before Federer frames a nervous-looking forehand. Tsonga has 0-30, but he slips to allow Federer an easy point on the next. A second serve is fired wide by Tsonga, but he has break point after passing Federer from the baseline! Can he convert his first break point of the match? No! He disappointingly fires the ball into the net, and Federer eventually holds with an ace.
Tsonga 3-6 5-7 4-5* FedererTsonga deserves plenty of credit for remaining competitive in this match. He confidently holds to love to force Federer to serve for the match. He made inroads on the Swiss's serve in his last service game. Can he go one better this time around?
Tsonga 3-6 5-7 4-6 FedererMATCH! Tsonga nets on the first point, before he is wrong-footed by a Federer forehand for the umpteenth time in this match. The Frenchman then goes long from the baseline, and Federer has three match points. The Swiss throws in his first double fault of the match, but a volley seals the match on the second. That was pretty special.
10.59amThe superlatives are going to be out after that performance, and rightly so. He has comprehensively beaten Jo-Wilfried Tsonga to move through to a match with Andy Murray on Wednesday. How good is that going to be!
11.03amThat's all from Sports Mole for this match. It wasn't the five-set classic that we might have wished for, but it was pretty exciting nonetheless. Goodbye for now.