Roger Federer out as Novak Djokovic storms into Australian Open final

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

Novak Djokovic tonight beat Roger Federer to move into the Australian Open final and leave the Swiss master without one of the four grand slam titles for the first time since 2003.

With Rafael Nadal also going out last night it means Sunday's final will be the first at a major in three years not to feature either the Spaniard or Federer.



And while it may signal a changing of the guard, the more immediate focus should be on Djokovic, who was quite simply brilliant in winning 7-6 (7/3) 7-5 6-4 to move on to a meeting with either David Ferrer or Andy Murray.



Federer threatened first by bringing up a break point in Djokovic's first service game but the Serb escaped danger with some big groundstrokes which had the Swiss scrambling.



It proved to be the only break chance in the first set as the serve dominated.



Djokovic was certainly holding his own in the baseline exchanges, however, after targeting the Federer backhand. But he could not find a way through and the set went to a tie-break in which the world number three was more pro-active and deservedly took it 7-3.



Djokovic remained on the front foot at the start of the second and he grabbed the first break of the match for a 2-1 lead after Federer sent a backhand long.



Federer appeared rattled and had a word with the umpire as he went to the chair.



But, as he has done so many times over the years, the 16-time grand slam champion found the perfect riposte, breaking back for 2-2 and then again claiming the Djokovic serve to establish a 4-2 advantage.



The Swiss still had to withstand a Djokovic rally, saving two break points, the second of which with a delightful volley lob over his opponent after he had chased down a drop shot, to move 5-2 ahead.



But Djokovic came again with Federer serving for the set and this time got the break after getting to a short ball and steering a forehand down the line.



Djokovic's ability to move forward swiftly came to the fore again as he clinched the next game with a beautiful angled backhand to level it at 5-5.



The momentum had swung once more and Federer, all of a sudden, looked vulnerable.



And it was no surprise when the Swiss was broken again after dumping a weary-looking backhand into the net to hand Djokovic the chance to serve for the set.



The Serb did not crumble and succeeded where Federer had failed 20 minutes earlier.



No one inside a packed Rod Laver Arena expected the defending champion to leave quietly and he started the third set with renewed purpose. He brought up three break points in a 13-minute second game but Djokovic held on.



Federer had to scramble himself in the next game, two big serves dragging him back from 15-40, but Djokovic's intensity did not dwindle and he broke through for a 2-1 lead which soon became 3-1.



The former world number one threatened to get back on level terms by bringing up two break points in the eighth game. Djokovic saved the first with a booming ace out wide but he could not stave off the second as the ball looped up nicely off a net cord and Federer put it away from mid-court.



At 4-4 the set was back in the balance but Djokovic quickly regained the upper hand by breaking Federer to 30.



And after a few late nerves, the Serbian served it out.



"He puts pressure on you so I tried to stay aggressive to the last moment," he said.



"I had to take my chances. In the second set I was a break up and then 20 minutes later 5-2 down so if I had lost that set God knows where the match would have gone."



On tomorrow's second semi-final between Ferrer and Murray, Djokovic added: "I am looking forward to watching it from my bed with some popcorn.



"They are both great players, David played a great match against Rafa although he was struggling with an injury.



"And Andy has been playing really well. It's a grand slam final, anything can happen but I believe in myself."



News
Sir David Attenborough
people
Life and Style
Young girl and bowl of cereal
food + drink
News
Comic miserablist Larry David in 'Curb Your Enthusiasm'
peopleDirector of new documentary Misery Loves Comedy reveals how he got them to open up
Arts and Entertainment
Henry VIII played by Damien Lewis
tvReview: Scheming queens-in-waiting, tangled lines of succession and men of lowly birth rising to power – sound familiar?
PROMOTED VIDEO
Sport
football
Arts and Entertainment
'The Archers' has an audience of about five million
radioA growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Ready to open the Baftas, rockers Kasabian are also ‘great film fans’
musicExclusive: Rockers promise an explosive opening to the evening
Life and Style
David Bowie by Duffy
fashion
Arts and Entertainment
Hell, yeah: members of the 369th Infantry arrive back in New York
booksWorld War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel
News
advertisingVideo: The company that brought you the 'Bud' 'Weis' 'Er' frogs and 'Wasssssup' ads, has something up its sleeve for Sunday's big match
Arts and Entertainment
tv
News
i100
Environment
Dame Vivienne Westwood speaking at a fracking protest outside Parliament on Monday (AP)
environment
Life and Style
tech
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness