There’s something about Madrid that seems to keep getting Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal to square off. It seems only appropriate that one of the greatest rivalries in tennis plays out again on the world number one’s home turf. After a ruthless Rafa beat Michael Llodra handily 6-2, 6-2 in their quarterfinal match Federer overcame the sometimes brilliant Robin Soderling 7-6, 6-4 to complete the dream semi final.
On the other side of the draw Thomaz Bellucci surprised Tomas Berdych in straight sets to set up a meeting with none other than Novak Djokovic who was pushed to three sets by scrappy Spaniard David Ferrer.
But it is the Federer/Nadal showdown that has tennis fans drooling. At this point I think almost everyone fully expects Djokovic to sail through his match with Bellucci, hopefully we’ll see a battle but ultimately I think it’s going to be up to one of the two greatest in the game to halt the Djokovic winning streak.
Rafa currently leads their head to head 15-8, winning their last meeting, a semi in Miami only a few weeks ago. While Rafa is number one and Federer number three in the rankings we’re going to be seeing a lot more semi final clashes between the two this year.
“Whoever the opponent is tomorrow it’s going to be a difficult match. With Federer it’s always a special match. With Soderling, he’s a dangerous player when he’s playing well. You cannot have control of the match all the time when you play against Soderling and this makes it uncomfortable. Whoever wins, it will be a difficult semi-final.” – Rafael Nadal
“I think this is a match that many fans and media want to see, especially here in his home country. It’s obviously special and nice. On clay it’s obviously his territory a bit more, but I’ve enjoyed my time with Rafa on the court, even though I have a lot more time left on the court with more victories.” – Roger Federer