Novak Djokovic claimed 27th victory over Roger Federer by beating the Swiss ace 7-6 (1), 6-4, 6-3 to reach the Australian Open final on Thursday. Federer who went into the match with a groin muscle injury was up 4-1 and 40-0 on Djokovic's serve in the first set but an array of unforced errors saw the Serb winning his first service game.
Djokovic will now be seeking his record eighth Australian Open title and a 17th Major. The No. 2 seed will face either Dominic Thiem or Alexander Zverev in Sunday’s final.
In an on-court interview, Djokovic said, “It could have definitely gone a different way if he wins one of those breakpoints. He started off really well. I was pretty nervous at the beginning. I just want to say respect to Roger for coming out tonight. He was obviously hurt and wasn’t at his best, even close to his best in terms of movement. Respect for him coming out and trying his best all the way through.”
Despite being not 100% fit, Federer gave a tough fight to Djokovic, serving 15 aces and hitting 46 winners against him, but couldn’t snap an eight-year drought against the Serb at the Majors.
“Today was horrible to go through what I did.” Nice entrance, nice send-off, and in between is one to forget because you know you have a three percent chance to win. You know, got to go for it. You never know. But once you can see it coming, that it's not going to work anymore, it's tough,” Federer told the press.