Top seed and home favourite Roger Federer suffered an early exit from the Gstaad Open as big-hitting Daniel Brands powered his way into the quarter-finals.
Germany’s Brands needed only 28 minutes to rattle six aces past Federer on his way to taking the first set 6-3 and he quickly went a break up in the second before the Swiss rallied.
Federer saved four break points while sneaking four games onto his card but his relentless opponent smashed five more aces to clinch a 6-3, 6-4 win in little over an hour on the Gstaad clay.
Brands, who took a first-round set from Rafael Nadal at this year’s French Open, has a burgeoning reputation as a tricky customer on the ATP Tour and last week he forced 17-time grand slam winner Federer into a third set at the German Open.
The 26-year-old from Deggendorf will now face Victor Hanescu in the last eight after Roberto Bautista Agut of Spain retired hurt when trailing the Romanian 7-6 (7/2), 3-2 earlier yesterday. The winner will face either Juan Monaco or Mikhail Youzhny in the semi-finals.
In the other half of the draw, Robin Haase needed a little over an hour to beat third seed Janko Tipsarevic 6-2, 6-2 and will now face Marcel Granollers in the last eight. The Spaniard held his nerve to beat Federico Delbonis, the Argentinian slumping to a 6-2, 7-5 defeat.
> The World No 5 has won only the Halle title this season after claiming the Wimbledon crown in 2012.
> Last week, Federer was stunned by Argentine qualifier Federico Delbonis, the World No 114, in the Hamburg semi-finals.
> That defeat came just a month after Federer was knocked out of Wimbledon by Ukraine’s World No 116 Sergiy Stakhovsky in the second round.