Nadal Takes First Set Against Federer in Australian Semifinal

Rafael Nadal won the first set of his Australian Open tennis semifinal with Roger Federer in a tie-break.

Nadal took the set 7-6 (7-4).

Federer, the record 17-time men’s Grand Slam champion, hasn’t beaten Nadal in a major since 2007 at Wimbledon, and the sixth-seeded Swiss player has only won 2 of their 10 previous matches.

Nadal, the top seed, is going for his 14th major title, which would tie him with American Pete Sampras. The Spaniard missed last year’s event with a knee injury, and won the title in 2009.

The winner plays Federer’s compatriot, Stanislas Wawrinka, in the final this weekend. Wawrinka reached the final by upsetting defending champion Novak Djokovic of Serbia in the quarterfinals, and defeating Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic in the semifinals.

Wawrinka has played Nadal 12 times without a victory, and has beaten Federer just one of the 14 occasions they’ve met.

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