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Roger Federer marches past Berdych to Australian Open semis


Switzerland's Roger Federer celebrates after victory in his men's singles match against Bulgaria's Grigor Dimitrov on day five of the 2016 Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne on January 22, 2016. AFP PHOTO / GREG WOOD-- IMAGE RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - STRICTLY NO COMMERCIAL USE

Melbourne: Third seed Roger Federer booked his 12th Australian Open tennis semi-final appearance with a 7-6(4), 6-2, 6-4 win over Tomas Berdych here on Tuesday.

“I’m very, very happy. Tomas has caused me a lot of problems over the years,” said Federer, who notched his 80th win at Melbourne Park, making the Australian Open his most successful Grand Slam in terms of matches won. “He’s one of the guys who makes you a better player. He’s beaten me on the biggest courts around the world.”

Federer and Berdych traded breaks in the third and fourth games of the opening set at the Rod Laver Arena. Berdych saved a set point serving at 4-5, but the No.6 seed couldn’t hold off Federer in the tie-break. The 17-time Grand Slam champion carried the momentum into the second set, converting service breaks in the first and seventh games to further distance himself.

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But with Berdych serving at 4-all, he was broken for the fifth time, giving his opponent a chance to serve out the match in two hours and six minutes. Federer finished the match with 48 winners to 26 unforced errors. “He was playing really, really aggressive, without any mistakes, without any unforced errors,” said Berdych. “He was just too good today. I mean, that’s it. That’s the way that he needed to play this time. He did it, I would say, quite accurately today,” Berdych added.