Melbourne, Australia (4E Sports) – Stanislas Wawrinka booked his first Grand Slam final appearance after beating Tomas Berdych, 6-3, 6-7(1), 7-6(3), 7-6(4), in the semifinal of the Australian Open Thursday.
“I feel great. It’s amazing,” said Wawrinka. “I didn’t expect to make a final in a Grand Slam in my career. Tonight it’s happening, so I’m really happy.”
In the end, Wawrinka edged Berdych by just one point. He garnered 143 points to finish the match in three hours and 31 minutes with an unreturned serve.
Wawrinka could face Roger Federer in the first all-Swiss Grand Slam final, should the latter overcome Rafael Nadal in Friday night’s semifinal.
“To play a Swiss final would be amazing, first for Switzerland, for the country,” said Wawrinka. “He is the best player ever. For me it’s my first final. To imagine to play against Roger would be amazing.”
The 28-year-old Wawrinka is riding the momentum of a career-best 2013 season, which saw him reach his first major semifinal at the US Open and qualify for the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals.
Wawrinka is unbeaten in 2014, opening his campaign by winning his fifth ATP World Tour title at the Aircel Chennai Open. He advanced to the semifinals at Melbourne Park by dethroning three-time defending champion Novak Djokovic in five sets.
On the women’s side, No. 4 Li Na battled past No. 30 Eugenie Bouchard, 6-2, 6-4, to book a spot in the final against Dominika Cibulkova.
Li won 20 of the first 23 points of the match to build a 5-0 lead but Bouchard showed that she had some fight in her, winning four of the next five games before losing the first set.
In the second, Li found her range once again from there, reeling off six of the next eight games to close out the Canadian and advance to her fourth Grand Slam final.
Cibulkova, for her part, defeated Agnieszka Radwanska, 6-1, 6-2, to earn a date with Li.