British number one Andy Murray reached his second successive Australian Open final when defeating Spain’s David Ferrer in four sets in the Rod Laver Arena at Melbourne on Friday.
The 23-year-old Scot set up a final showdown with Novak Djokovic on Sunday after coming through an intense match against a dogged Ferrer winning 4-6, 7-6(2), 6-1, 7-6(2) in three hours and 46 minutes.
The match featured some long, high quality rallies between the two men and Murray was grateful his big serve was working well to get him out of trouble on a number of occasions in the first two sets. Murray raced away with the third set and with Ferrer looking tired with little answer to the Scot’s majestic ground strokes there looked just one possible winner. But Murray got a little sloppy with some unforced errors at key times and Ferrer was able to fight his way back into the game. In the end, the world number five was able to overcome his brave Spanish opponent to register a historic win to earn a place in his third grand slam final.
Online bookmaker Boylesports was quick to quote odds for the young British hope who will be wishing for third time lucky. The Irish bookmaker is offering odds of 6/5 for Murray to overcome world number three Djokovic to become Britain’s first grand slam winner since the great Fred Perry in 1936.
Djokovic goes into the final as favourite and gets an additional days rest after beating Roger Federer in Thursday’s semi-final. Murray and Djokovic have met seven times before and the Serbian leads 4-3 in head-to-head encounters. But, Murray will feel he can gain the upper hand on Sunday having won their last three meetings including two Masters Series finals, in Cincinnati in 2008 and Miami in 2009.