Roger Federer calmly worked through a second-set deficit to defeat Andy Murray 6-3, 7-5 on Friday for a place in the semi-finals of the ATP Tour’s Cincinnati Masters.
Second seed Federer took 93 minutes to storm to victory after trailing 4-1 in the second set.
“I started well, I was hitting the ball well,” said the 17-time Grand Slam champion.
“I was the more aggressive player out there. I was having more impact from the baseline. I deserved that first set. In the second set, I lost a little rhythm and everything got tougher for me.”
Federer won four second-set games to take a 5-4 lead after winning the opening set. He then earned a match point on the Scot’s serve in the next game, clinching the victory from a Murray forehand into the net.
“I was obviously well up in the second and blew it. It’s a shame,” said Murray.
Federer will now play for a spot in his second Masters 1000 final against Canadian fifth seed Milos Raonic, a winner over Italy’s Fabio Fognini 6-1, 6-0.
The 33-year-old Swiss star owns a 5-0 record over Raonic, with their last meeting coming at Wimbledon.
Sharapova, Serena advance to last four
Maria Sharapova won a re-match of her French Open title victory over Simona Halep, rallying for a 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 win to reach the semi-finals of the Cincinnati Masters.
“It was a pretty poor first set from my end, a lot of unforced errors,” said Sharapova. “I think it was some of the lowest first serve percentages I’ve had for a while.”
Meanwhile, top-seeded Serena Williams cruised into the final four with a 6-1, 6-3 win over Jelena Jankovic.
“She’s beaten me several times, so I knew today I just had to be focused and do the best I could,” said Serena, who has never lifted the trophy in Cincinnati.
In another quarter-final, France’s Julien Benneteau won 12 of the last 15 games to stun Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka 1-6, 6-1, 6-2 and reach the first Masters semi-final of his career.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 17th, 2014.
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