Canada Flashback: Roger Federer edges Novak Djokovic to reach title clash

Andy Murray defeated world no. 1 Rafael Nadal in straight sets in the semi-final in Toronto 2010. Still, things were not to become easier for the Briton, with Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic facing in the other semi-final. Federer and Djokovic met for the 15th time on the Tour, and the Swiss celebrated the tenth victory following a 6-1, 3-6, 7-5 win after two hours and 22 minutes for his 27th Masters 1000 final. Roger fired 11 aces and fended off six out of nine break chances, three at 5-5 in the decider that pretty much earned the victory for him. Novak wasted those chances and got broken five times, mainly thanks to a slow start and a terrible opening set. They had a similar number of winners and forced errors, and Roger tamed his strokes more efficiently in the unforced errors to edge the opponent. Federer forged the win in the shortest points up to four strokes, with Djokovic having the upper hand in the most extended rallies, which was not enough to propel him over the top.

Roger held at 15 in the opening game with a service winner and broke Novak at love to grab an instant advantage. Firing from all cylinders, the Swiss landed an ace in the third game and another at 3-1 after only 12 minutes. In the extended sixth game, Djokovic squandered his chances and sent a backhand long to find himself 5-1 down.

Roger Federer beat Novak Djokovic in three sets in Toronto 2010.

The Swiss served for the set and fired another service winner to wrap up the opener in 25 minutes, hoping for more in set number two. Unable to find his strokes, Novak lost serve again at the beginning of the second set when his forehand landed wide and held after a couple of deuces at 0-2 to at least grab a game. The Serb finally found some gear on the return and broke back in game four after forcing Roger’s error, holding at love a few minutes later to open a 3-2 gap.

Federer fended off a break chance in the sixth game and had opportunities on the return in the next one. Novak stayed calm and brought it home after eight deuces and almost 15 minutes. Federer sprayed a forehand mistake at 3-4 to fall behind, wasted a break chance a few minutes later and allowed Djokovic to close the set 6-3 with a forehand winner. Starting all over, Roger broke at love in the decider’s fourth game and served for a 5-2 advantage. He wasted game points and got broken after Novak’s backhand winner to keep the rival in contention. The Swiss held from 30-0 down in the ninth game and erased three break points at 5-5 to stay alive, holding with a service winner and sending pressure to the other side. Novak could not convert two game points in the 12th game and got broken after a weak forehand that propelled Roger into the title clash against Andy Murray.