Nadal and Djokovic to meet in BNP final
INDIAN WELLS, Calif. - Australian Open champion Novak Djokovic outlasted Roger Federer 6-3, 3-6, 6-2 to stay undefeated this season and reach the BNP Paribas Open final. To add insult to injury, Djokovic simultaneously knocked the Swiss star from the No. 2 spot in the world on Saturday.
Djokovic and Federer will switch spots when the rankings are updated on Monday, with the Serbian moving up to No. 2 and Federer slipping to third with an 18-3 mark this season.
All three of his losses have been against Djokovic, who is 17-0.
Neither of them had lost a set in reaching the semifinals, although Federer had a tougher time, dropping 29 games in eight sets, while Djokovic had lost just 12 games in eight sets, the fewest games lost in four matches in a Masters tournament since 1990.
Djokovic will play top-ranked Rafael Nadal in Sunday’s final.
Nadal rallied from a 3-0 deficit in the first set to beat Juan Martin del Potro 6-4, 6-4, ending a three-match losing streak to him.
Nadal improved to 31-4 at Indian Wells, where he won titles in 2007 and 2009.
It was the third time in 25 years at Indian Wells that the world’s top three men reached the semifinals.
Federer became just the fourth player to take a set off Djokovic this year when he won the second after losing to him in straight sets in the Australian Open semifinals and in the Dubai final this year.
Djokovic broke Federer to open the third set, then staved off two break points and hit a forehand winner that kissed the sideline to hold for 2-0.
Federer broke back when Djokovic double-faulted at love-40 to tie the set at 2-2. Federer then double-faulted to lose the next game and the Serb won the final four games to close out the win.
Djokovic reeled off 11 straight points in that period, breaking Federer’s serve once more with a forehand winner in the corner.
With Djokovic serving on his second match point, Federer sent his forehand return long. Djokovic pounded his chest with his right fist, delighting his Serbian flag-waving female fans who screamed for him.
Nadal needed a third-set tiebreaker to beat Ivo Karlovic in the quarterfinals and he started out slowly against Del Potro on a mostly cloudy day in the desert, with the temperature dipping to 70 degrees Fahrenheit, 20 degrees cooler than earlier in the week.
Nadal got broken on his forehand error in the second game and Del Potro held on for a 3-0 lead.
Del Potro held again and took a 4-1 lead before Nadal won the final five games, including an ace down the middle in the 10th game that gave him the first set.
“After that, I started to put more balls inside, play higher to his backhand and trying to get the right rhythm,” Nadal said.
“I did well. I played a few good games. He made a few more mistakes than usual. That helped me a little bit.”
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조코비치, 페더러 꺾고 나달과 파리바스 오픈 패권 다퉈
올해 호주오픈 우승자인 노박 조코비치(세계랭킹 3위·세르비아)가 왕년의 테니스 황제 로저 페더러(2위·스위스)를 꺾고 남자프로테니스(ATP) 투어 BNP 파리바스 오픈(총상금 364만5000달러) 단식 결승에 올랐다.
조코비치는 20일 미국 캘리포니아주 인디언웰스에서 열린 남자 단식 준결승에서 페더러를 2-1(6-3 3-6 6-2)로 물리쳤다.
이번 대회에서 8강전까지 단 한 세트도 내주지 않았던 조코비치는 페더러에게 2세트를 내주고 잠시 흔들렸지만 3세트를 6-2로 쉽게 마무리하며 결승 티켓을 손에 넣었다.
이번 시즌 17전 전승 행진을 이어간 조코비치는 내주 발표되는 세계랭킹에서도 페더러를 끌어내리고 2위를 예약했다.
조코비치는 후안 마르틴 델 포트로(90위·아르헨티나)를 2-0(6-4 6-4)으로 완파한 세계 1위 라파엘 나달(스페인)과 패권을 다툰다.
조코비치는 나달과의 역대 전적서 7승16패로 열세를 보이고 있어 나달마저 꺾고 연승 행진을 이어갈 수 있을 지 관심이다.