Rafa will need to step up his game if he expects to win against Roger.

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Roger Federer will play Rafael Nadal in the semi-finals of the BNP Paribas Open after the pair posted contrasting wins on Friday in Indian Wells. Federer made light work of Juan Martin Del Potro to book his place in the last four, but Nadal came within two points of defeat against David Nalbandian before winning in three. Third seed Federer raced to a 6-3 6-2 win in just 69 minutes. The Swiss broke three times and did not drop his serve once on his way to a straightforward victory. Federer, who saved the three break points he faced, hit 13 aces compared to his Argentinian opponent’s none and won 80 per cent of points on his first serve. Federer looked forward to renewing his rivalry with Nadal, telling the tournament’s official website: “He’s got a great work ethic, and obviously he’s one of the great players of all time. “I have had some great matches with him all around the world by now.”

Nadal had life much tougher as he dropped his first set of the tournament against David Nalbandian, but kept his composure win 4-6 7-5 6-4. Nadal, who has won 18 of his previous 27 matches with Federer, said on the ATP World Tour’s official website: “They’re always special matches, especially because they’re always are in very important matches for both of us. “That always makes the match very special. But even if it’s not the final, being in the semi-finals is an important match. “Playing against Roger always means a little bit more than against the rest of the opponents because I am playing probably against the best of the history, and because I played probably the most important matches of my career against him and probably him against me.”

World No.1 Novak Djokovic and American John Isner will face off in Saturday’s other semi-final.


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