A Swiss player will definitely be in the Australian Open men’s singles final after Roger Federer and Stan Wawrinka progressed to the last four in Melbourne Park.
The duo set up a semi-final clash against each other after Federer, who has won the title four times, defeated Germany’s Mischa Zverev and Wawrinka, the 2014 champion, beat Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France.
Zverev, who knocked out world number one Sir Andy Murray in the fourth round, could not find the same form that helped him beat the Briton as the 17th seed got through 6-1, 7-5, 6-2.
Looking ahead to Thursday’s (January 26) clash, Federer, who has won 18 of the 21 matches between them and has never lost on a hard court to Wawrinka, said his positive record against his fellow countryman will not hold much sway when they meet.
“I think him and Rafa [Nadal], now my best game,” the 35-year-old with 17 Grand Slam titles to his name said.
“I played him so much.
“Stan and I practiced so much together.
“With Rafa, I only practiced once in my life, whereas with Stan, I can’t even keep count anymore.”
Wawrinka, the tournament’s fourth seed, needed a tie break to win the first set off Tsonga and after gaining the momentum went on to win 7-6, 6-4, 6-3.
Twelfth seed Tsonga did manage to get a break of serve in the second set, but Wawrinka broke straight back, starting a streak of six straight games which set up the victory.
During the opening set, there was a sense of tension between the players with an exchange in French between them during a change of ends, with the Swiss asking: “What are you looking at?”
Tsonga responded: “I’m not looking at anything. What are you looking at?”