Murray in title round
Briton ousts Federer; Hesh-Bopanna in final
Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic cruised through their semifinals at the Shanghai Masters on Saturday to set up a repeat of their memorable US Open final last month.
Murray, bidding for a hat-trick of titles in Shanghai, overpowered world number one Roger Federer 6-4, 6-4 after Djokovic dispatched Tomas Berdych for the loss of one less game.
Federer, who conceded a crucial break of serve in the first set after serving three double-faults, was given a reprieve by a rain delay when Murray reached 5-4 in the second set but he could not fend off the inevitable on the resumption.
Murray will be looking for a third consecutive victory over Djokovic after beating the Serbian world number two in the Olympic semifinal and then in their Flushing Meadows showdown.
Djokovic was equally impressive against hard-hitting Czech Berdych. He roared into a 5-1 lead in the first set before Berdych made a match of it.
He was again dominant in the second set, capitalising on an early break to lead 4-2 before eventually serving out to sail into his first Shanghai final.
"Obviously it's a big challenge when you play a top 10 player," said Djokovic, who lost back-to-back Shanghai semifinals in 2009 and 2010. Tomas is in great form the past couple of months. He's always a difficult player to play against on any surface because he has a very powerful serve and great forehand.
"I played tactically right. I was putting a lot of returns into the court, putting a lot of pressure on his serve. On the other hand, I was serving well when I needed to."
Indian duo of Mahesh Bhupathi and Rohan Bopanna has set up a summit clash with Leander Paes and his Czech partner Radek Stepanek.
The seventh seeded Indian combo reached their second ATP World Tour Masters final of the season after beating British pair of Colin Fleming and Ross Hutchins 6-7(4), 6-3, 10-8. The fourth seeded Indo-Czech duo outplayed Marin Cilic of Croatia and Brazil’s Marcelo Melo 6-0, 6-2 in just 57 minutes.
Chang stuns Stosur
World No 134 Chang Kai-Chen stunned top seed Sam Stosur of Australia in the semifinal of the Japan Open in Osaka on Saturday. Taiwan’s Chang overcame six double faults and hit four aces to beat the world No 9 6-4, 4-6, 7-6 (7-3) in their first-ever encounter.
Chang will play Britain’s Heather Watson in the final after the latter overpowered Japanese Misaki Doi 7-6 (7-2), 7-5 in the first semifinal.