Novak Djokovic has defeated long time rival Roger Federer with a straight-set in one of the semi-final matches of the Australian Open.
The win moved him a step closer to retaining the Australian Open title.
Serbia’s Djokovic was 4-1 and 0-40 down in the opening set before recovering to win the tie-break.
That laid the platform for the 32-year-old second seed to go on and win 7-6 (7-1) 6-4 6-3.
Djokovic, aiming for a 17th Grand Slam title, will face Dominic Thiem or Alexander Zverev in Sunday’s final.
“The match could have definitely gone a different way if he had used those break points [in the sixth game],” Djokovic said.
“He started well – I was nervous.
“Respect to Roger for coming out tonight. He was obviously hurt and wasn’t close to his best in terms of movement.”
Victory would mean a record-extending eighth Australian Open triumph for Djokovic, who has lost just three matches at Melbourne Park in the past 10 tournaments.
It would also move him within three of 38-year-old’s Federer’s all-time record of 20 men’s Grand Slam singles titles and within two of Spain’s Rafael Nadal, who lost to Thiem in Wednesday’s quarter-final.
Djokovic was the heavy favourite to beat his long-time rival in what was their 50th meeting.
Questions were raised about Federer’s fitness going into the match, having struggled with a groin problem in his epic quarter-final against Tennys Sandgren.
And he needed an off-court medical timeout, presumably for the same problem, at the end of the first set.
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