MELBOURNE, January 26, 2017
Roger Federer advanced to the final of the Australian Open, winning the all-Swiss-encounter with Stan Wawrinka on Thursday evening. In the pair’s seventh Grand Slam meeting, Federer had the better start but eventually needed to go the distance to seal a 7-5, 6-3, 1-6, 4-6, 6-3 win in three hours and four minutes.
“I cannot just be happy to win two sets against Roger. I just lost a five-set match in the semifinal of the Australian Open. I never think about the past or what I did before. I’m proud of myself, of the fight I give tonight and all the tournament. I think there is a lot of positive from this tournament, from Brisbane, from the month already,” Wawrinka told afterwards.
By reaching his sixth Australian Open final, World No. 17 Federer has also become the lowest-ranked man to advance to the title match in Melbourne since No. 38 Jo-Wilfried Tsonga in 2008.
“It was an awkward match. Always against Stan, it was always never going to be easy. Especially how the third and fourth set went by, I needed to react really, because he had the upper hand from the baseline. I thought it was going to be tough in the fifth. I think he gave me a cheap break in the fifth. After that, I never looked back. I’m happy with my attitude in the fifth. So I’m very pleased, of course,” Federer said.
All-Williams Women’s Final
Earlier the day, Serena and Venus Williams emerged victorious from their semi-final encounters to meet in Saturday’s title match in Melbourne.
Serena has ended Mirjana Lucic-Baroni‘s fairytale run, winning 6-1, 6-1 in 50 minutes to reach her to reach her 29th Grand Slam final.
“Mirjana is an inspiration, she deserves all the credit today. To get this far, after everything she has gone through, that just inspires me. It’s great to see her out here, I was watching her the whole tournament and rooting for her,” Serena told.
“The serve was a little better today. I still want it to be better. I knew I had to serve well today, and take my chances as early as I could”
“I didn’t watch [Venus]. Obviously I was really proud, she’s an inspiration, my big sister. She’s my world, my life, she means everything to me. I couldn’t be happier for us both to be in the final. It’s the biggest dream come true for us.”
Venus Williams, who is playing in an Open Era record 73rd Grand Slam, is back in a major final for the first time in seven-and-a-half years. She fought past fellow US-American CoCo Vanderweghe 6-7, 6-2, 6-3.
“Oh my god, it means so much. Mostly because she played so well. I had to play defence the whole time. There was never a moment to relax. A match like this makes me so excited about American tennis as well,” Venus was happy and added:
“It’s more than a cherry on top. It’s more than I dreamed of.”
Day/Night attendance: 41,280
This is a record second Thursday day/night crowd, previous record AO2012: 38,566