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Rediff.com  » Sports » Federer demolishes Roddick to reach Aus Open final

Federer demolishes Roddick to reach Aus Open final

January 29, 2009 17:41 IST

Roger Federer advanced to the final of the Australian Open with a 6-2, 7-5, 7-5 demolition of Andy Roddick on Thursday.

The 27-year-old Federer extended his head-to-head record to 16-2 against Roddick and will now be aiming to equal Pete Sampras's record of 14 Grand Slam titles on Sunday.

Federer, who beat the American at the same stage in the 2007 tournament before going on to lift the title, will play either world number one Rafa Nadal or Fernando Verdasco in the final.

The Spanish pair play their semi-final on Friday.

Earlier, Dinara Safina overpowered fellow-Russian Vera Zvonareva 6-3, 7-6 to join American Serena Williams in the women's final.

The combination of Safina's heavier shot-making and aggression proved too much for Zvonareva as the third seed closed out victory in one hour and 46 minutes under a clsoed roof at the Rod Laver centre court.

Safina won four games in a row to take the opening set after trailing 2-3 then broke Zvonareva's brittle serve to force the tiebreak after the seventh seed blew her chance to force a deciding third set.

The 22-year-old Safina reached the French Open final last year but is now on the verge of a first Grand Slam title after rebounding from a shaky start to the tournament to produce her best performance when it mattered most.

The winner of Saturday's final will receive the added bonus of taking over the world number one ranking from Serbia's Jelena Jankovic, who was knocked out in the fourth round at Melbourne Park this year.

The men's doubles final will be between third seeds Mahesh Bhupathi-Mark Knowles and American second seeds Mike and Bob Bryan.

Bhupathi and his Bahamian partner Knowles thrashed Lukasz Kubot and Oliver Marach 6-3, 6-1 to make the final of a Grand Slam event together for the first time since forging the partnership in 2008.

In the other semi-final, the Bryans beat fourth seeds Leander Paes-Lukas Dlouhy 6-3, 6-3.