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11-26-2010, 11:27 PM #1
Murray, Federer advance to semis at ATP finalsRoger Federer and Andy Murray easily secured spots in the semifinals of the ATP World Tour Finals on Thursday with straight-sets victories in their last round-robin matches.
Federer continued his dominance over Robin Soderling, beating the Swede 7-6 (5), 6-3 to earn top spot in Group B of the season-ending tournament. Murray followed up by recovering from a shaky start to beat David Ferrer 6-2, 6-2 and hand the Spaniard his third straight loss in the group phase.
Their semifinal opponents will be decided on Friday, when the last round-robin matches in Group A are played.
Federer won his third straight group match and improved his career record against Soderling to 15-1, with his only loss to the Swede coming in this year's French Open quarterfinals.
"(Soderling) always brings out something different every time he plays me because he has to try different things," Federer said. "I was able to handle it well, which was a very happy feeling for me to have."
Federer broke for a 5-3 lead in the second set, hitting a backhand passing shot that Soderling could only return into the net. The second-ranked Swiss then set up match point with a drop shot and converted it when Soderling hit his return into the net.
The two traded breaks once in the first set before Federer took control of the tiebreaker by earning a mini-break with a forehand winner after a long rally and followed it up with two straight aces for a 5-2 lead. He converted his second set point with a lunging one-handed backhand that Soderling let sail past him thinking it would be long, only to see it land in the far corner of the court....being a human...