World Tour Finals – semifinals

2nd semifinal:

(2)Roger Federer d. (3)Andy Murray  7-6(5), 6-2    [1:33 h]

Their third meeting this year in London after Wimbledon (Federer won 3-1) and Olympics (Murray won 3-0)… The Scot, who got their last two matches easily (Olympics and Shanghai) began on Sunday evening in a full of vigor attitude, his flat backhand was working exceptionally well, he was 3:1* (30/0) ahead. At 30-all in that game, Federer finally played a scintillating forehand winner, and yelled “come on!” He broke back in the 8th game. In the tie-break Murray led 3:1* once again, the sixth point of that tie-break was vital – Federer prevailed a 22-stroke rally with a forehand inside-out winner. When he led 5:4*, Murray netted a forehand which he should have played much more better, he broke the top of his racquet right after, and was booed by numerous groups of Federer’s fans. Once Federer got the opening set, he felt comfortably out there, his serve was magnificent in the 2nd set, Murray seemed indifferent since he lost his serve leading 40/0 in the 3rd game (lost five points in a row in a bad style). The Swiss added another break in the 7th game and served out the match to ’15’ displaying two fruitful S&V actions. He will play in ‘Masters’ final for the eight time, one final shy of accomplishment of Murray’s coach Ivan Lendl. “I think he played well,” said Murray. “I didn’t think it was incredibly high standard in terms of length of points. There were a lot of quick points. I started the match well. […] Once he gets ahead, he’s incredibly hard to stop. He tends to play better and better when he gets up.”

1st semifinal:

(1)Novak Djokovic d. (6)Juan Martin del Potro  4-6, 6-3, 6-2    [2:12 h]

The best player of the last two seasons proposed high standard from the very beginning. Del Potro managed to save two break points in the 2nd game, the second one with a terrific forehand down the line from the tram-lines, and got into the atmosphere of the O2 arena. Djokovic started very aggressively, Del Potro was forced to play several moon-lobs, two of them caused Djokovic’s pretty embarrassing overhead errors which might have affected his mindset even though he led 4:3 after seven holds. The Argentine took the initiative winning 5 out of next 6 games, including a break at 1-all in the 2nd set after a punishing rally consisted of many slices. Djokovic stayed cool, broke back immediately (after two ‘deuces’) putting himself in the driving seat. Although it was their seventh meeting, for the first time went to a deciding set. In the 3rd game of the decider, DelPo made two crucial narrow forehand errors, four games later he was broken again, this time D’Joke hammered it out striking brilliant forehands. He capitalized his superiority with huge serves and celebrated his second advancement to ‘Masters’ final (first one in Shanghai 2008) to the tune of David Bowie’s “Heroes”. Third time lucky in London for him, he lost two semifinals there in 2012 (Wimbledon to Federer, Olympics to Murray), now moves one step further. “Nole improved his game, basically, between the middle of the second set until the end of the match,” said Del Potro. “He deserved to win today. I think I played really good in the first two sets. If you don’t play [for the] whole match [at] your best level, it’s really difficult to beat him.”

Doubles semifinals:
(5)M.Bhupathi/R.Bopanna d. (3)L.Paes/R.Stepanek 4-6, 6-1, [12-10] – 1 m.p.
(6)M.Granollers/M.Lopez d. (8)J.Marray/F.Nielsen 6-4, 6-3
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