7 Jul 2012

Federer to meet Murray in Wimbledon final

8:35 am on 7 July 2012

Swiss tennis great Roger Federer has turned in a virtuoso performance to reach an unprecedented eighth Wimbledon final.

Federer defeated the world No. 1 and defending champion, Serbia's Novak Djokovic, 6-3 3-6 6-4 6-3 in the first men's semi-final.

He will face Andy Murray, who became the first Briton to reach the men's final at the All England Club in 74 years with a 6-3 6-4 3-6 7-5 win over Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France.

Federer, who said after his semi-final match that he was ecstatic, could now equal the record of seven Wimbledon crowns, held jointly by William Renshaw and Pete Sampras.

"I played a great match today and it's been a tough tournament for me really," Federer said after walking off court to huge applause.

"But I was able to play some fantastic tennis today and I thought Novak played good too ....It was a lot of fun out there today."

After the first two sets were shared in less than an hour, the match came alive in the third set.

Serving at 4-5 Djokovic blazed a smash long at 15-30 to give Federer two set points. Djokovic saved the first with a forehand but Federer seized his chance, winning a sensational 20-stroke rally with a smash to move within a set of the final.

Djokovic could not recover and dropped serve early in the fourth set as Federer rolled to his first final at the grasscourt slam since he beat Andy Roddick in 2009.

Federer held his nerve when he served for the match, sealing it after two hours and 19 minutes when Djokovic netted a forehand return.

His effort in reaching an eighth final at the All England Club surpassed the seven of Sampras, Boris Becker and Britain's 1908 London Olympics dual gold medallist Arthur Gore, AAP reports.

Murray ends 74-year waiting game

Andy Murray consigned one of Wimbledon's long-standing statistics to the scrapheap when he defeated Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France to became the first Briton to reach the men's final since 1938.

The 25-year-old Scot kept his wits about him during the semi-final, including in the third set when Tsonga's game suddenly caught fire, to win 6-3 6-4 3-6 7-5 in two hours 47 minutes.

Sunday's final is already being described as a dream match.

A pair of tickets to the historic game is said to be fetching up to £45,000.