Tennis

Murray ousts misfiring Federer

2012-10-13 16:46
Andy Murray (Gallo Images)

Shanghai - Andy Murray heaped the misery on Roger Federer on Saturday, taking advantage of an astonishing service meltdown by the Swiss great to set up a mouthwatering final against Novak Djokovic.

The US Open champion, who has never been beaten at the Chinese tournament, won 6-4, 6-4, repeating his victory in the Olympic final that came after the searing pain of defeat to Federer just weeks earlier at Wimbledon.

The pair swapped breaks at the start of the match but the first set hinged on an incredible fifth game when 17-time Grand Slam champion Federer was broken to love after the normally ice-cool Swiss double-faulted three times in a row.

Third seed Murray, who won the Shanghai Masters in 2010 and 2011, immediately put the world number one under the cosh at the start of the second set but the Swiss dug deep to save seven break points and edge ahead.

But Federer, 31, continued to struggle and it was the fifth game of the second set that again proved pivotal, with the 25-year-old Scot sealing a break against the Swiss, who had led 40-0, with a devastating forehand return winner.

Murray faced an agonising wait of more than half an hour to serve for the match as the roof was closed at the Qi Zhong Stadium after it started raining and an army of people descended on the court to dry the playing surface.

The players left the court and had to knock up again but Murray kept his nerve to serve out for victory, sealing the match when Federer netted.

Earlier, in-form Djokovic accelerated his push for the year-end number one ranking, dismissing the challenge of fourth seed Tomas Berdych in a one-sided match.

The Serbian second seed came into the clash with an impressive 9-1 lead against the Czech player in head-to-head match-ups and immediately took charge, dominating the contest to win 6-3, 6-4.

"Tomas is in great form in the last couple of months. He's always a difficult player to play against on any surface because he has a very powerful serve and great forehand," said Djokovic.

"I played tactically right," the 25-year-old added. "I was putting a lot of returns into the court, making a lot of pressure on his serve. On the other hand, I was serving well when I needed to."

Yet to drop a set in Shanghai, the Australian Open champion was ruthless, breaking at the first opportunity and repeating the feat as he threatened to run away with the opening set.

Berdych, 27, bidding to reach the elite ATP World Tour Finals in London, slowed Djokovic's charge but could not prevent him from sealing the set, with a single break enough for the five-time Grand Slam champion in the second set.

Djokovic faded towards the end of a stellar 2011 but looks fresh as he hunts down Federer at the top of the rankings. He is looking to add the Shanghai Masters title to the China Open crown he won last weekend.

Because of his limp end to last season, Djokovic has relatively few points to defend in the rolling 12-month rankings whereas Federer has more to lose after a successful spell towards the end of 2011.

NEXT ON SPORT24X

Navratilova ties the knot

2014-12-22 14:22

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

 

Five wrapping hacks you have to know before Christmas

Five gift wrapping hacks that will save Christmas for you!

 
 

I love summer.24

Sexiest Instagrams of 2014
Joburg hot spots for cocktails, craft beer, tapas and wine!
Summer Survey!
Great ideas for the best summer sandwiches!
 
 
/Sport
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...

Featured

Got something you'd like to get off your chest? Got a burning desire to air an opinion? If so, be sure to sign-up on Sport24's FORUM!

Latest blogs
Vote

Which is your favourite Grand Slam of the year?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

Forum Have your Say on Sport24's brand new Forum!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.