Second-seed Rafael Nadal held off hard-hitting No. 7-seed Tomas Berdych at the Australian Open on Tuesday, 6-7 7-6 6-4 6-3, to set up a much-anticipated semi-final with rival Roger Federer.
It took Nadal four hours to defeat Berdych, and was in danger of going two sets down against the Czech star under the lights at Rod Laver Arena.
It was still vintage Nadal. The Spain legend hit winners from all types of angles, and dominated the third and fourth sets. Nadal has been battling shoulder and knee problems in the tournament, but still managed to put a great effort at Melbourne Park despite Berdych's inspired performance.
Happy with how I finished the match physically. I was able to keep running with high intensity, Nadal said after the match.
Many fans at the Australian Open will be pleased to see Nadal and Federer in another showdown. The last time the rivals met at Melbourne Park was in the 2009 Final, which proved to be a classic.
Federer is coming off a quarter-finals victory over Juan Martin Del Potro, the player who beat the Swiss star in the 2009 U.S. Open Final.
On the other side of the braket, top seed Novak Djokovic faces No. 5-seed David Ferrer, while fourth seed Andy Murray meets surprise quarter-finalist Kei Nishikori, of Japan.