MASON, Ohio, (Reuters) – Britain’s Andy Murray will face world number one Novak Djokovic in the final of the Cincinnati Open today.
While Murray produced a 6-3 7-6 win over American Mardy Fish in sweltering heat on Saturday, Djokovic reached his sixth Masters series final of the year when Czech Tomas Berdych retired with a shoulder injury after losing the first set 7-5.
Berdych had picked up the injury during his quarter-final victory over Roger Federer on Friday and had warned that he might not be fully fit for the clash with the game’s hottest player.
While the retirement disappointed the Ohio crowd, it allowed the Serb to extend his record this season to 57-1 and 32-0 on hardcourts.
Djokovic, the clear favourite for the U.S. Open, starting on Aug. 28, will now get a good test from Murray, who must fancy his chances of going all the way at Flushing Meadows with Rafa Nadal and Federer both out of sorts.
The Scot was on top in the first set, playing smart tennis, but struggled during a bizarre second set, which featured six breaks of serve and ended with a tie-break, won 10-8 by Murray.