Nadal sets up Murray final
Originally published on: 26/02/10 12:23
Nadal broke the American’s serve in the seventh game to claim the decisive break of the opening set but met more resistance in the second. He managed to break Roddick’s serve twice but was unable to hold his own while serving for the match at 5-4.
But once the match reached the tie-break, Nadal stepped up his game to return to the final for the first time since he won the tournament in 2007.
“I had to play well since Andy was going strong in the second set,” said Nadal. “He’s had a good start to the season. Against Murray it will be interesting, he’s playing well and has had some good results this year.”
Earlier in the day, Murray continued his fine record against Roger Federer with a 6-3 4-6 6-1 triumph over the former world number one to advance to the final.
The first four games went with serve until Murray made the breakthrough in the fifth, which proved to be enough for the world number four to take the set.
Aided by a double fault, the Swiss responded by breaking the Scot’s serve in the opening game of the second set then assumed the advantage with another break in the seventh to go 4-3 up. The 27-year-old saw out the remainder of the set with relative comfort to ensure the match would go the distance.
Following a couple of unforced errors from Federer, Murray broke the world number two’s serve to establish a 3-1 cushion. And from there the Briton did not look back, breaking the Federer serve again and then – on his fourth match point – completing victory to improve his record against his rival to six wins in eight meetings.
“Every time I play Roger, I feel like I’ve got a shot to win,” Murray told reporters. “That’s one of my best wins against him for sure.”
Looking forward to the final, Murray added: “I have started to play better against Nadal lately. He’s obviously one of the toughest players ever. I have to play some of my best tennis.”