Federer and Nadal to clash in the Semifinals of Australian Open 2012

A dominating win by Roger Federer in his 1,000th career match and a more difficult workout for Rafael Nadal set up a rare Grand Slam marquee semifinal between the former top-ranked players.

Four-time Australian Open champion Federer advanced to his ninth straight semifinal at Melbourne Park with a 6-4, 6-3, 6-2 quarterfinal win Tuesday over Juan Martin del Potro, the man who beat him for the U.S. Open title in 2009.

Federer's 1,000th match was similar to most in his career -- no-nonsense, dominating from the start, and with some incredible shots.

"It's a lot of matches and a lot of tennis," said Federer, a record 16-time Grand Slam champion. "Either I have been around for a long time or I'm extremely fit. You decide which way you want to describe it. But I'm happy."

“I’d like to get a chance to play him again here,” Federer said, speaking before Nadal’s latest Melbourne marathon was done.

In an often tempestuous night match at Rod Laver Arena, Nadal advanced with a tough 6-7 (5), 7-6 (6), 6-4, 6-3 win over Tomas Berdych.

“For everything, for what represents the match, all the matches against Roger are special,” Nadal said. “And they will be special even if we are 20 against 25.”

After health scares in the buildup to the first major tournament this year — the back for Federer, a shoulder and a knee for Nadal — both men radiated vitality in Rod Laver Arena on Tuesday.

"Happy with how I finished the match physically. I was able to keep running with high intensity," Nadal said.

Federer and Nadal -- they were ranked 1-2 for many years -- have been on opposite halves of the draw since the 2005 French Open. That was the last time the pair met in a Grand Slam semifinal, won that year by Nadal in four sets.

Federer's career can be enhanced even more if he wins the title this year at Melbourne Park. With a 232-34 record in Grand Slam singles matches, he can overtake Jimmy Connors' mark of 233 wins if he collects the title here.

Del Potro, who has recovered from the right wrist injury that sidelined him for most of 2010, played well in flashes. But Federer was at another level, hitting lobs, drop shots, cross-court winners and generally negating del Potro's big forehand.

"We have played some big matches against each other, so just knowing how well he's been playing as of late, I was just hoping that I would get off (to) a good start," Federer said. "I was able to mix it up well and control the ball, and right away sort of felt confident."

The quarterfinals on the other side of the men's draw are Wednesday -- Andy Murray plays Kei Nishikori of Japan, and top-seeded Novak Djokovic takes on David Ferrer.

Date: 24.01.2012


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  2. Its going to be one tough battle, two great champions taking on each other...both are playing very well till now , if we look at their game stats till now (Federer/Nadal Epic Semi- Final - What do Australian Open Stats Indicate?- Part 1 http://bit.ly/z4jhyP ), we can see that their weak points have been completely different till now at AO! Can't wait to watch it! I will pick Federer in 4!