SHANGHAI: World number one Novak Djokovic and 17-times Grand Slam winner Roger Federer will battle for a place in the Shanghai Masters final after they powered through their quarter-final matches Friday.
Gilles Simon of France and Spaniard Feliciano Lopez will also meet in Saturday’s semi-finals as the tournament reaches its dramatic climax.
Federer won his evening match against Julien Benneteau of France, taking the first set at the tie-break, before demolishing his opponent in the second to finish with a 7-6 (7/4), 6-0 scoreline.
Federer, the third seed in Shanghai, last faced Djokovic in the epic Wimbledon final.
The Swiss player is marginally ahead in their previous meetings, winning 18 times, compared to 17 for seven-times Grand Slam winner Djokovic
“I think every time we play against each other, it’s a thriller,” Shanghai top seed Djokovic said.
“It’s really a big challenge for both of us. We need to take the best out of us. We need to bring our ‘A game’ in order to win.”
Federer has been in stunning form this season, and is set to overtake world number two Rafael Nadal in the rankings on the back of his run in Shanghai.
But both players are some distance behind Djokovic.
“I think we always play tough against each other,” Federer said on his semi-final opponent.
“We’ll see how much he can actually do, how much he can neutralise me, and how much I can do with him.”