Australian Open 2013: Djokovic and Sharapova Enter Semi-Finals
By Vishnuprasad S | January 22, 2013 10:57 PM EST
World number one and defending champion Novak Djokovic booked his place in the semi-finals of the Australian Open, with a four-set victory over fifth seed Tomas Berdych.
The Serb showed no signs of fatigue from his five-hour encounter with Switzerland's Stanislas Wawrinka in the previous round and overcame a slip in the second set to beat his Czech Republic opponent 6-1, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4.
"It was a great performance. I was hoping to have a shorter match, and not to go over 5 hours this time. It was always going to be tough against Tomas, he is an established top 10 player with a big serve and I came out and played my best tennis," Djokovic told BBC.
Also through is, fourth seed David Ferrer, who came back from two sets down to oust fellow Spaniard and 10th Nicolas Almagro in an epic quarter-final battle. The 30-year-old won the match 6-4, 6-4, 5-7, 6-7(4), 2-6 in three hours and 44 minutes and will now face Djokovic, who he thinks is the favourite for the title
"Nole is a special player, he has every shot. I think he will be recovered, for sure, because he is physically unbelievable. He's the best, I think. He's the number one of the world and the favourite to win the Australian Open for me. I will have to play better than today for to win, for sure," Ferrer said.
In women's singles, world number two Maria Sharapova of Russia advanced to the semi-finals, courtesy of a 6-2, 6-2 victory over compatriot and 19th seed Ekaterina Makarova. The former Australian Open champion took just over an hour to set up a meeting with sixth seed Li Na of China, who prevailed over world number four Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland 7-5, 6-3.
Meanwhile, Williams sisters, Venus and Serena, have crashed out of the women's doubles after losing to Italian duo Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci in the quarter-finals, 3-6, 7-6(1), 7-5.
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