NEW YORK, Sept. 4 (Xinhua) -- The second-seeded Swiss star Roger Federer fought back from two-set down to beat 20th-seeded Frenchman Gael Monfils 4-6, 3-6, 6-4, 7-5, 6-2 to reach U.S. Open semifinal on Thursday.
Monfils held two match points in the fourth set, but Federer managed to save both and pull back the victory.
"I still thought the finish line was far for Gael. I knew I could play better tennis. I got off to a good start, so I was actually feeling alright, but then when I was down two match points, that's when I wasn't feeling so great anymore," said Federer about the match points.
"I thought, 'This is it. This is last point, man. Just go down fighting, don't miss an easy shot and let him have it. It's fine.'"
It was the ninth time for Federer to reach U.S. Open last four. He had a great memory at Flushing Meadows, winning five straight titles, but he failed to reach semifinal again since 2011.
"I think my game got better as the match went on, you know," said Federer.
"I was able to play throughout at a high level physically and mentally. Mentally I'm not ever going to go away, but physically I was right there.
"I felt I had more chances throughout the fourth than he did, so it would have been an unbelievable letdown for me to get broken at 5-4 and lose a match like that. It would have been not very cool, I must say."
The 33-year-old veteran was looking forward to his 18th Grand Slam title.
"I'm looking forward to playing Marin (Cilic of Croatia)," Federer said at the on-court interview.
"He's a great guy. We had a tough, tough match in Toronto. I think I needed nine match points to close him out and beat him at midnight, 6-4 in the third, so we know what to expect."