Andy Murray looking to halt the 'Fed Express'. Image courtesy of Getty Images, Source: Herald Sun
Twelve months ago, Murray was successful in a five set classic against Federer in the semis at Melbourne Park. This time it’s in the quarters and the two go into the match with a win-a-piece in head-to-heads at the season opening Grand Slam.
In 2010, Federer crushed Murray 6-3, 6-4, 7-6 in a one-sided final to claim the men’s singles crown and an emotional Scot apologised for not putting up more of fight. Three years later Murray got his revenge beating the Fed 6-4,6-7,6-3,6-7,6-2 in the semis, only to go down to Novak Djokovic in the final. Since then, Murray’s had back surgery and Federer a lean 2013.
But heading into a third rumble ‘Down Under’, both are in form and fresh. Federer hasn’t dropped a set in his four matches thus far and was ultra-impressive disposing of 10th seeded Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga 6-3, 7-5, 6-4 in just under two hours. In getting to the quarters, the 17-time Grand Slam winner has played 112 games. On the opposite side of the net, Murray has played 116 games even though he surprisingly dropped a set to ‘lucky loser’ Stephane Robert in the round of 16.
Both have shot down a seed – Murray taking out 26th seeded Spaniard Feliciano Lopez in straight sets in the second round, while Federer easily eliminated Tsonga last match. Super-stars with super games, both have super coaches in their corners. Murray’s mentor is Czech-born American Ivan Lendl who won 8 Grand Slams, while Team Federer now includes Sweden’s six-time Slam winner Stefan Edberg.
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