A roundup of what you may have missed overnight from Andy Murray’s 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-3, 6-7 (2), 6-2 win over Roger Federer in the Australian Open semifinals.
ESPN’s package highlights: As an aside, can we get the SportsCenter guys some seminars on how to call tennis highlights? At a minimum they should learn the difference between “cross-court” and “down the line.”
Shot of the match: Murray shows off his defensive skills with this scrambling topspin lob winner that elicited a standing ovation from the pro-Federer crowd.
Mirka Federer does not want a camera in her face:
The full clip of Murray’s post-match interview with Jim Courier:
Go figure: The match by the numbers:
• The match lasted exactly four hours.
• Murray hit 21 aces, 64 percent 1st serves, 63 percent 2nd serve points won, 62 winners, 47 unforced errors, for a +15 differential.
• Federer hit 5 aces, 61 percent 1st serves, 42 percent 2nd serve points won, 43 winners, 60 unforced errors, for a -17 differential.
• This was Murray’s first win over Federer at a major, having lost three prior meetings. The win moves Murray’s head-to-head record over Federer to 11-9.
• Murray is the first man in the Open era to reach a Slam final immediately after his maiden Slam title.
• Murray has now made three straight Slam finals, six overall.
• Murray moves his 2012 record to 10-0.
• This was the first time Federer has played back-to-back five-set matches in his career, having been pushed to five in his quarterfinal against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
• Rankings update: Despite the win, Murray will remain at No. 3 after the tournament even if he wins the title on Sunday.
• Murray and Djokovic will meet in a Slam final for the third time, having split their previous two meetings. Djokovic beat Murray in the 2011 Australian Open final. Murray won in five sets at the 2012 U.S. Open.
In their own words
• Federer on Murray’s improvement:
So obviously with the win I think at the Olympics and the U.S. Open, maybe there’s just a little bit more belief or he’s a bit more calm overall. You want to be excited, but you don’t want to go overly crazy, you know, each and every point. So it seems like he has more peace when he plays out there, and in the process he has better results, I guess.
• Murray on his growing confidence since winning his first major title at the U.S. Open last year:
I’ve been questioned for large parts of my career about physically would I be strong enough, mentally would I be strong enough, do I listen to my coaches, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, whatever it is, can I handle pressure. I think those years of having all of those questions and then finally to be able to answer them I think, yeah, it was all part of the process. So I hope on Sunday I can play a good match. Obviously having won against Novak before in a slam final will help mentally.
• Federer’s takeaway from the tournament:
So I go from here with a good feeling for the year. I didn’t play a tournament leading in, so now obviously I know where my level is at. Also knowing I have even more time to work on my game, work on my fitness this year. It’s something I’m excited about.
• Murray on whether he’ll be able to physically recover for Sunday’s final. Djokovic will have had a full extra day’s rest:
You know, realistically you’re probably not going to feel perfect because of how the match went tonight, but it’s not to say you can’t recover well enough to play your best tennis.
• Federer picks his favorite for the final:
Obviously Novak goes in as the favorite, I would think, even though Andy beat him at the U.S. Open.
There are no winners in this semifinal, just cannon fodder for the Djoker.—
Drew Lawrence (@by_drew) January 25, 2013
Andy Muray was right at Wimbledon last year. He was getting closer. Now he is here.—
Jason Gay (@jasonWSJ) January 25, 2013
Either we have first AO three-peater; or we have first first-time Slam winner to win subsequent Slam. History either way…—
Jon Wertheim (@jon_wertheim) January 25, 2013
Andy Murray just drew a happy face on the camera. Of course, because clockwise is backwards in Australia, it was actually a sad face.—
Brian Phillips (@runofplay) January 25, 2013
No British man has won a Grand Slam in four months.—
Chris Chase (@chaztopher) January 25, 2013