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Federer & Nadal to meet in final

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal
Sunday's final will be Federer's 15th meeting with Nadal (right)

Roger Federer will meet Rafael Nadal in the Monte Carlo Masters final after Novak Djokovic withdrew from their semi-final clash.

The world number one was leading 6-3 3-2 before the Serbian retired after complaining of feeling dizzy.

Nadal, the three-times defending champion, had earlier beaten Nikolay Davydenko 6-3 6-2.

The Spaniard was rarely troubled and will meet Federer in Sunday's final for the third consecutive year.

It will be the 15th career meeting between the two top-ranked players in the world and Nadal will be hoping to become the first player since 1914 to win four consecutive Monte Carlo titles.

"I think I served a bit better today," said Federer. "I served well when I had to and I was consistent from the baseline.

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"Tomorrow, I will try to push him (Nadal) to see what happens."

Federer, who had been two points away from defeat in his opening match against world number 137 Ruben Ramirez Hidalgo, clinched the first set after breaking in the eighth game.

And after an exchange of breaks early in the second set, which left Federer 3-2 up, 20-year-old Djokovic retired, much to the disappointment of the crowd.

"I haven't been feeling well for three days and I've been waking up with a sore throat," said Australian Open champion.

"I thought it was nothing serious but against the best player in the world you have to be able to run down a lot more balls and need more energy, which I didn't have.

"I was feeling dizzy and I didn't want to risk anything."

Nadal won the first set 6-3 against his Russian opponent without facing a break point.

Davydenko failed to convert his chances, winning just one of five break points, while Nadal broke five out of seven times and won the second set 6-2.

"I have to be satisfied with winning 6-3, 6-2 against the fourth best player in the world," said Nadal.

"I think he was more tired than me and that probably helped. But I played well today. My forehand worked well and when he attacked I kept running.

"I feel like I am becoming more adapted to the clay every day."


see also
Murray 'can be clay-court star'
21 Apr 08 |  Tennis
Murray up one place in rankings
14 Apr 08 |  Tennis


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