Both players were extremely dominant on serve in the opening set and unsurprisingly it went into a tiebreak where Federer lifted his game to take it.
Federer then kept up his momentum to break Tsonga in the opening game of the second set and lead 3-1 but the Frenchman fought back to get level and then broke the Swiss star to win the set 6-4.
In a tense deciding set, Tsonga grew in confidence and applied the pressure on Federer’s serve.
But the top seed withstood the big hitting from Tsonga and broke him to lead 6-5 and serve for the match which he did in impressive style to book a match with Roberto Bautista Agut on Friday.
ROGER FEDERER VS JO-WILFRIED TSONGA AS IT HAPPENED
THIRD SET (*denotes server)
*FEDERER 7-6 4-6 7-5 TSONGA
Federer nets a backhand slice, 0-15. Big Federer wide serve, 15-15. Tsonga forehand return winner, 15-30.
Big Federer second serve, 30-30. Huge slice of luck for Federer as his backhand clips the nets and flies away from Tsonga. Match point.
Federer ace. GAME. SET. MATCH. FEDERER.
FEDERER 7-6 4-6 6-5 TSONGA*
Tsonga forehand long, 0-30. Federer backhand winner down the line. Magnificent. Three set points.
Federer just wide with a forehand, 15-40. Tsonga nets a forehand and Federer gets the breakthrough. He’ll serve for the match next.
*FEDERER 7-6 4-6 5-5 TSONGA
Federer ace, 30-0. Huge Tsonga forehand return winner down the line, 30-15. Federer backhand wide, 40-30.
And Federer draws level once again. On we go in this deciding set.
FEDERER 7-6 4-6 4-5 TSONGA*
Equally impressive service game from Tsonga as he holds to 15 and puts the pressure back on Federer. Can the Swiss hold his nerve?
*FEDERER 7-6 4-6 4-4 TSONGA
Much better service game from Federer as he holds to love in no time at all.
Jo-Wilfried Tsonga won the second set
FEDERER 7-6 4-6 3-4 TSONGA*
Ace number 15 from Tsonga, 30-15. And another deft drop volley keeps him in front. Superb touch.
The roof is being closed as we speak. Perhaps some rain in the area is coming.
*FEDERER 7-6 4-6 3-3 TSONGA
Federer forehand shank, 0-30. He escapes again to make it 30-all. Wow, Federer nets a smash inexplicably, break point.
Saved when Tsonga goes wide with a forehand. And Federer gets out of jail again.
FEDERER 7-6 4-6 2-3 TSONGA*
More big serving from Tsonga then finishes the game with a delicate drop shot. Classy stuff. He’s enjoying himself out there.
*FEDERER 7-6 4-6 2-2 TSONGA
Tsonga goes long with a backhand up the line, 40-30. And the Swiss holds after a cross court forehand winner. Another tough game for the 37-year-old.
FEDERER 7-6 4-6 1-2 TSONGA*
Eight points from eight for Tsonga on serve. He’s the man with the momentum right now.
*FEDERER 7-6 4-6 1-1 TSONGA
Federer backhand into the net, 0-30. Better from Federer as he bosses the point and draws the error from Tsonga, 30-30.
Federer backhand winner, 40-30. And the Swiss stops Tsonga’s little streak.
FEDERER 7-6 4-6 0-1 TSONGA*
Tsonga holds to love to start the set.
Roger Federer vs Jo-Wilfried Tsonga LIVE
*FEDERER 7-6 4-6 TSONGA
Federer backhand error, 15-30. Tsonga forehand winner, two set points. Federer goes long with a volley and we are going the distance.
Brilliant comeback from Tsonga.
FEDERER 7-6 4-5 TSONGA*
Federer forehand long, 40-0. And another forehand error from Federer means he will have to serve to stay in the set.
*FEDERER 7-6 4-4 TSONGA
Normal service resumed on serve for Federer as he holds to love.
FEDERER 7-6 3-4 TSONGA*
Tsonga completes the comeback as a series of big serves puts him ahead in the set.
*FEDERER 7-6 3-3 TSONGA
Federer forehand wide, 15-30. Then Federer nets a backhand, two break points. Federer saves both, including a second serve ace.
Third break chance for Tsonga as Federer’s forehand clips the net and flies wide. And the French star gets back level when he smashes a forehand down the line and Federer can only put the volley wide.
FEDERER 7-6 3-2 TSONGA*
Tsonga ace, 40-15 and he forces the error from Federer after some booming backhands.
Roger Federer is a nine-time champion in Halle
*FEDERER 7-6 3-1 TSONGA
Lovely Tsonga forehand down the line, 30-15. Federer smash winner, 40-30. Tsonga then goes wide with a return to allow Federer to keep his lead.
FEDERER 7-6 2-1 TSONGA*
Tsonga ace, 30-all. Then Federer nets a forehand return. Tsonga ace to survive this service game.
*FEDERER 7-6 2-0 TSONGA
Tsonga return wide, 40-15. Great hands at the net from Federer and he consolidates the break.
FEDERER 7-6 1-0 TSONGA*
Break point Federer after Tsonga puts a backhand slice long.
And he gets the first break of the match with a stunning forehand return winner. What a start to the set.
FEDERER 7-6 TSONGA – TIEBREAK
Federer forehand wide as Tsonga goes on the attack, 0-1. Federer backhand wide, 0-2. Tsonga ace, his seventh of the match, 0-3. Tsonga return long, 1-3.
Another Tsonga return long, 2-3. Tsonga nets a forehand, 3-3. Tsonga ace, 3-4. Federer smash winner, 4-4. Lovely Federer drive forehand into the corner, 5-4.
Great Federer return and Tsonga puts a defensive forehand long, 6-4. Big Tsonga serve, 6-5. Big Federer serve, 7-5.
FEDERER 6-6 TSONGA*
Tsonga backhand slice long, 15-30. Big forehand winner from Tsonga then an ace, 40-30. Federer fails to get the return in play and it’s tiebreak time.
Roger Federer won the first set in a tiebreak
*FEDERER 6-5 TSONGA
Glorius backhand overhead from Federer, 30-0. Tsonga then goes long with a forehand return to give Federer another easy game.
FEDERER 5-5 TSONGA*
Ace No4 for Tsonga, 30-15. Tsonga nets a forehand, 30-30. Great rally ends with Federer picking off Tsonga at the net, set point.
Big Tsonga serve down the T, deuce. Then an ace. Tsonga shanks a forehand, deuce again. Tsonga forehand winner then Federer misses with a backhand up the line.
Big hold for Tsonga.
*FEDERER 5-4 TSONGA
Federer second serve ace, 40-0. And the Swiss comes through another service game thanks to a forehand winner.
FEDERER 4-4 TSONGA*
Back-to-back aces move Tsonga to 40-0. A Federer forehand winner makes it 40-30. But Tsonga ends Federer’s fightback with a big wide serve.
*FEDERER 4-3 TSONGA
Better from Federer on serve as he holds to love. Normal service resumes.
FEDERER 3-3 TSONGA*
Tsonga finds the gap to flick a backhand up the line, 30-0. Then he hits another forehand winner.
Federer finally gets a point on Tsonga’s serve when the French star nets a forehand. But he flicks another backhand winner, this time cross court to hold comfortably again.
*FEDERER 3-2 TSONGA
Tsonga catches the line with a forehand winner, 0-15. Then Federer goes long with a forehand down the line. Federer then nets a forehand, two break points.
Ace. Forehand winner. Back to deuce. And a volley at the net closes out the game. A good recovery there.
FEDERER 2-2 TSONGA*
Tsonga ace, 40-0. Then a wrong-footing forehand winner into the corner. Made that look very easy.
*FEDERER 2-1 TSONGA
Tsonga gets the first point against serve as a good return catches out Federer at the net. But wins the game with a big serve down the T.
FEDERER 1-1 TSONGA*
Good serving from Tsonga as Federer fails to get the ball back with his returns. Both players hold to love.
*FEDERER 1-0 TSONGA
Tsonga just long with a forehand down the line, 40-0. And Federer closes out the game with an ace.
16:35: Federer to serve first…
16:30: Right on cue, Federer walks out to a huge ovation from the Halle crowd as he follows Tsonga onto court.
16:25: FIVE MINUTES TO GO KLAXON!
16:20: Federer is the top seed this week in Halle and comes into the match as the favourite over Tsonga, who is making his way back up the rankings after injury.
The last match between Federer and Tsonga came in 2016 which the Frenchman won.
16:00: Federer and Tsonga will start on time at around 16:30 BST. That is because Alexander Zverev has defeated American Steve Johnson 6-3 7-5.
15:45: Hello and welcome to LIVE coverage of Roger Federer’s second-round clash against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga at the Halle Open.