Berdych beats Ferrer to Australian semifinal berth

Disappointed Spaniard pulls out of Davis Cup match against Germany

David Ferrer at his post-match press conference on Tuesday.
David Ferrer at his post-match press conference on Tuesday. MAST IRHAM (EFE)

David Ferrer’s bid to reach the semifinals of the Australian Open for a third time were ended Tuesday by world number seven Tomas Berdych, who won in four sets to set up a final-four meeting with Stanislas Wawrinka. Berdych has never before made the semifinals in Melbourne and in doing so completes his set of Grand Slam last-four appearances. It was also the first time he had won a match on the Rod Laver Arena, having been knocked out at the quarterfinal stage in the last three tournaments.

“That was definitely the thing on my agenda,” said Berdych of his blank on the main show court. “My coach reminded me, saying this is the only court that you haven’t won a match on. It’s really a great feeling.”

Ferrer, who will lose his rank of number three in the world when the standings are published next Monday, blamed his own game for the loss and praised Berdych for his steely nerves. “Tomas started very well and I improved in the third and fourth sets. But he never gave me a chance to get into long rallies. I had my opportunities in the fourth but Tomas served very well. I haven’t been playing very well these past few weeks and I’m not happy. Today I served weakly, I lacked spark. I got into the game later but I started very slowly,” said Ferrer, who is working with a new coach this season.

Ferrer then announced that he would not be available for Spain’s forthcoming Davis Cup tie against Germany, but stressed his decision only affected the opening round.

On Wednesday Rafa Nadal, the last Spaniard left standing in the singles events in Melbourne, will attempt to reach the semifinals against Bulgaria’s Grigor Dimitrov.

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