Vintage Federer sets up showdown with Djokovic

Sun Nov 11, 2012 6:45pm EST
 
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By Martyn Herman

LONDON (Reuters) - Roger Federer provided an emphatic reminder that he will be chasing more major titles next year with a vintage display to outclass Britain's Andy Murray on Sunday and set up a season-ending blockbuster with Novak Djokovic.

The Swiss 17-times grand slam champion, who will turn 32 next year, continued his dominance of the ATP World Tour Finals with a 7-6 6-2 victory over the man who deprived him of Olympic singles gold at Wimbledon.

In his eighth final in 11 years at the ATP's blue-riband tournament, Federer will face world number one Djokovic after the Serb's granite-like defences helped repel the brute force of Argentina's Juan Martin del Potro for a 4-6 6-3 6-2 victory.

Neither semi-final lived up to their pre-match billing although Federer's majestic form after a slow start against Murray had a sell-out crowd at the O2 Arena in raptures even if he was playing a home favourite.

Murray, who bounced back to win Olympic gold and then the U.S. Open after the heartache of losing to Federer in this year's Wimbledon final, made a lightning start, breaking in the opening game, but ultimately played second fiddle to the master.

Federer edged an hour-long first set after an exemplary tiebreak and then turned on the style in the second to move one victory away from winning a hat-trick of titles at the Thames-side arena that has been hosting the championships since 2009.

"I love playing Novak," Federer said, looking ahead to Monday's final. "I think for both of us, it's pretty straightforward. I think we've got to press out the last juice that's left in our body and make it a successful year end."

INITIALLY OVERPOWERED   Continued...

 
Switzerland's Roger Federer celebrates winning his men's singles semi-final tennis match against Britain's Andy Murray at the ATP World Tour Finals at the O2 Arena in London November 11, 2012. REUTERS/Suzanne Plunkett