It was an exciting match in the end, and befitting of a final, which saw Novak Djokovic prevail over Roger Federer in the US open last four clash at the Flushing Meadows Saturday. Djokovic ralled from two sets to love down and saved a couple of match points in the fifth set to go through to the final where he will take on Rafael Nadal.
For the second time in a row, Djokovic had overcome Federer after saving a match-point but rather interestingly, only the fourth time in 24 meetings between the two has a player winning the first set not gone on to win the match.
Federer played near flawless tennis in the first two sets, although the match was still quite close. In fact, in the first set, there was no break of serve and it went into a tie-breaker. At six points all, the match seemed headed into one of those long, point of no return tie-breakers, but Roger Federer finally came through 9-7.
The second set of the match, which had been delayed by 90 minutes because of rain, saw Federer gain more confidence as Djokovic began to lose focus in the encounter. He broke Djokovic quite early in the set, and despite being broken back by Djokovic in the sixth game, came back strongly to take his opponent’s next service game. The set went to Federer, who had earlier beaten his nemesis Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in straight sets in the quarter-finals, and it looked like his impeccable form would carry him through to the finale.
The fightback, however, was mounted by Djokovic from very early in the third set. There was a break of serve early in both, the third and the fourth set that allowed him to win them 6-3 and 6-2 to take the match into the final set. By this time, Djokovic had regained his lost composure and was bouncing around as Federer looked far more vulnerable than before.
Federer wasn’t done though. He broke Djokovic early and went on to serve for the match at 5-3. The match looked to be in his pocket when he had two match points at 40-15 but the great Houdini’s act was performed by Djokovic, who won the next two points and went on to break Federer to take the game.
Djokovic held in his next game, before following up with another break of serve against the now-rattled Federer, before serving out the match and winning 6-7 (7-9) 4-6 6-3 6-2 7-5.
Djokovic will now play Rafael Nadal in the final of the US Open, who had come through with a four-set win over Any Murray.