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Tennis: Wawrinka fells Berdych to reach his first Grand Slam final

Published on Jan 23, 2014 8:28 PM
Stanislas Wawrinka of Switzerland celebrates his win over Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic during their men's singles semi-final match on day 11 of the 2014 Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne on Thursday, Jan 23, 2014. .-- PHOTO: AFP

MELBOURNE (REUTERS) - Stanislas Wawrinka will bid to break the "Big Four" strangle-hold on Grand Slam silverware after edging out Tomas Berdych 6-3 6-7 (1-7) 7-6 (7-3) 7-6 (7-4) in a serving war on Thursday to reach the Australian Open final.

In a slow-burning contest that occasionally roared to life, the Swiss eighth seed stepped up on big points to reach his first major final where he will meet either top seed Rafa Nadal or his great compatriot Roger Federer.

With only a single break of serve in the entire match, Wawrinka upped the ante in the decisive tie-break, earning three match points when his seventh-seeded Czech opponent pushed a serve long.

He closed out the match with another huge serve and punched his fists in the air as the Rod Laver Arena crowd roared.