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Federer beats Nadal in thrilling Wimbledon semi-final


Switzerland’s Roger Federer celebrates beating Spain’s Rafael Nadal during their men’s singles semi-final match on day 11 of the 2019 Wimbledon Championships at The All England Lawn Tennis Club in Wimbledon, southwest London, on July 12, 2019. (Photo by Daniel LEAL-OLIVAS / AFP)

Roger Federer yesterday rolled back the years in a thrilling Wimbledon semifinal to zoom past Rafael Nadal into tomorrow’s final. It was an eagerly-anticipated first grass-court duel between the great rivals for 11 years.

It was also the 40th career meeting between the duo that has dominated the game, but after a see-saw game, Federer took the day 7-6 (3), 1-6, 6-3, 6-4.

The 37-year-old Federer, who became the oldest man to contest the Wimbledon final since Ken Rosewall in 1974, will meet Novak Djokovic tomorrow.


Federer delivered seven aces en route to taking the first set tie-break by seven points to three.

However, in the second set, Nadal broke Federer in the third game and cruised to win 6/1. Federer held serve in the opening game and broke Nadal’s serve to lead 3-1. Serving next, Federer registered two aces to reach 40-30.

Although Nadal forced a deuce, he lost the first advantage and Federer held on his first opportunity to lead 4-1. With the momentum shift, Nadal fell behind 15-40 but battled to deuce before holding the sixth game to reduce the tally. Federer held to lead 5-2 and took the third set 6/3 on his serve. An early break in the fourth set gave Federer a 3-1 lead.

Federer, who had lost all four of their previous Grand Slam semi-final meetings, won the Centre Court tussle on his fifth match point after three hours and two minutes.

Earlier, Novak Djokovic of Serbia had defeated Spain’s Roberto Bautista Agut, 6/1, 4/6, 6/3, 6/2 to reach his sixth finals.

Djokovic lost the first point of the match on his serve when Agut hammered a forehand winner. And he broke Agut’s serve in the fourth game to lead 3-1.

In the fifth game, Agut had two break points but could not hold and his opponent delivered an ace to lead a second service break Djokovic won the first set 6-2 in 37 minutes.

Agut broke Djokovic’s serve to lead 2-1 in the second set and was up 3-1 when play was suspended because of an indisposed spectator, who had to be helped out of the stadium.

On resumption after the brief break, Agut raced on to win the set 6/4 with a net-cord winner. Djokovic won the third set that featured a record four-shot rally by the two unyielding baseliners.

In the fourth set, Agut held serve to lead 1-0, conceded a break in the third game and Djokovic stretched the gap 3-1. A second service break put Djokovic at 4-1 and although Agut held the seventh game for 5-2, the world’s number one player won the set on a third match-point.

The Djokovic match was one for the records in many ways. He became the fourth player in the Open era (which commenced on April 1968) to record more than 70 victories at Wimbledon. In the finals, the Serbian will be seeking his fifth title at The Championships, Wimbledon.

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