Federer downs Nadal to set up Djokovic duel for Wimbledon title


Djokovic sarcastically encouraged fans to get louder after he dropped the second set of his 6-2, 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 semifinal victory against Bautista Agut.

Federer will not mind with his win coming just a month after Nadal handed him his worst loss at a Slam in 11 years in the Roland Garros semi-finals.

The match turned on an fantastic 45-shot rally in the sixth game of the third set, which Djokovic won to break serve - and from then on he took total control.

Defending his backhand nicely, Roger avoided slices and lengthy exchanges to hit in full throttle, taming his shots nicely and overpowering Nadal in sets three and four to book the place in the final against Novak Djokovic, the first since those two title clashes in 2014 and 2015.

In this generation of tennis it was Federer who set the pace and Nadal who followed suit, and perhaps that is why this match-up is looked upon with such gushing eyes.

37 year old Federer is bidding to win his 21st Grand Slam, and extend his own lead over his opponent for the most Slam singles titles of all time.

Federer won his first Wimbledon in 2003, beating Mark Philippoussis in the final.

Continuing his relentless attacking onslaught, Federer forced Nadal into errors to break the Spaniard again in the fourth game of the fourth set to take a stranglehold on proceedings.

The 38-year-old won that contest, and Moya is cautious how that will help Federer ahead of their match-up on Centre Court today.

Federer ruefully blundered a chance to gain a match point on Nadal's serve at 3-5 when he unsuccessfully challenged a line call having hit a clean victor. Moments later, he was ending a 45-stroke baseline exchange - the longest on record at Wimbledon, where such stats date to 2006 - with a backhand victor to save a break point.

It took Federer five match points to finally defeat Nadal in what was the legends' 40th career meeting. However, it was Nadal who emerged victorious in the memorable 2008 final at the Grass Court championship. "Rafa played some unbelievable shots to stay in the match", Federer said.

This will be his maiden major semi-final appearance. "I got a bit tight and it was a very important probably first four or five games of the second set". By ranking (22nd), he should not have presented much of a threat to Djokovic, who had won three of the previous four Grand Slams. I played a great event.

"Hopefully I can push him to the brink and beat him, but it's not going to hard".

However, Djokovic in a Wimbledon semi-final is a different entity.

Djokovic was broken once in the second set, allowing Bautista Agut to even the score.

After watching Bautista Agut's shot hit the net tape, pop in the air and slide over for a victor that tied things at a set apiece, Centre Court spectators stood and cheered, perhaps envisioning a tight match.