MX23RW : Thursday, April 22 00:26:41| >> :600:260021809:260021809:

Live Commentary: Australian Open semi-finals: Novak Djokovic vs. David Ferrer - as it happened

Live text coverage of the Australian Open semi-final between Novak Djokovic and David Ferrer.

Novak Djokovic needed just 88 minutes to book his place in the final of the Australian Open.

The world number one took a 6-2 6-2 6-1 straight-sets win over Spain's David Ferrer.

The top seed did not face one break point against his serve throughout the match, rarely looking like he was having to push hard to take games.

The reigning champion will face either Andy Murray or Roger Federer in the final on Sunday.

Read how all the action unfolded below:

Good morning! We're around half an hour from the start of the first of the men's semi-finals between top seed Novak Djokovic and fifth seed David Ferrer.

The pair have played 14 times before, before Djokovic having nine wins to Ferrer's five, with the Serb taking victory in their last three meetings.

This will be Ferrer's fifth appearance in a Grand Slam final. He's made the last four at every slam but Wimbledon, but has never been in the final.

Djokovic first won the Australian Open in 2008 to take his first ever Grand Slam title. Since then he's won four more, including the last two in Melbourne.

Today's winner has the advantage of an extra day off to prepare for the final. Andy Murray and Roger Federer will compete for the other place in Sunday's showpiece at this time tomorrow.

The rest will be welcomed by both players. Djokovic played a mammoth five-hour five-set match against Stanislas Wawrinka in the fourth round, while Ferrer has to come through a five-set quarter-final against fellow Spaniard Nicolas Almagro.

If you missed the women's semi-finals earlier today, you can check out Sports Mole's reports on Victoria Azarenka's straight-sets win over Sloane Stephens, and Li Na's victory over Maria Sharapova. Li will face Azarenka in the women's final on Saturday.

If Ferrer does make it to the final, he will be the oldest player to make it to the final of a Grand Slam for the first time. The Spaniard is 30.

If Djokovic goes on to take the title on Sunday, he will be the first man to win the tournament three years in a row.

After his quarter-final win, Djokovic was asked in his on-court post-match interview about his recovery from the Wawrinka match. He said that he had spent much of the day after asleep and watching TV, before doing ice baths on the day of his quarter-final with Tomas Berdych. Ferrer will surely have been undergoing a similar recovery routine in preparation for today.

The players are making their way from the changing rooms to the court. They'll spend a few minutes warming up in the Rod Laver Arena before getting the match underway.

Big cheers from the crowd for both players as they walk out on to the court.

Let's take a quick look at the conditions. It's been a hot day in Melbourne, with temperatures still up around 35°C in the early evening. There's little wind and no rain expected. It sounds rather energy-sapping! Looking ahead to Sunday, there's a grey cloud forecast, maybe the men's final will be taking place under the roof.

The warm ups are done and they're about to get underway, with David Ferrer having won the coin toss, and chosen to serve first.

An interesting first game. Ferrer holds with some good, strong serves, but Djokovic did force the Spaniard in to a couple of rallies, where his speed around the court got the better of the fourth seed.

Djokovic starts his service game well, quickly taking a 40-0 lead. However, Ferrer fights his way back in to the game with some great returns, but Djokovic manages to hang on to take the game.

More good serves from Ferrer, as he makes it difficult for Djokovic to make returns. Already, there have been a few long rallies in this match.

A good hold from Djokovic as he prevents Ferrer from taking a single point against his serve. There's been little sign of either playing being able to attack their opponent's serve and go for a break yet in this opening set.

BREAK! A brilliant rally from both players ends with a backhand volley from Djokovic to bring up the first break point of the match. The pair exchange shots from the baseline before Ferrer fires one long, giving the world number one the advantage in this set.

Once again, Ferrer is unable to take a point off the Djokovic serve, with the Serb relying on powerful serves and superb forehand winners to get past the fourth seed.

BREAK! Some great defensive shots against the Ferrer serve help Djokovic to deuce. The world number one gets a break point when the Spaniard tries to come in to the net for a volley but misses the shot. He seals the game on the next point to take a two-break lead, and will serve for the set in the next game.

SET! Djokovic 6-2 Ferrer

It takes Djokovic less than half an hour to take a one-set lead against the Spaniard. He finishes with another strong service game, sealing the set with an ace.

Ferrer started well, never looking in any real danger in his first couple of service games, but once Djokovic took his first break there was little resistance from the world number five.

Ferrer makes a good, aggressive start to the second set. The fourth seed's forehand hits the top of the net, but the ball lands on Djokovic's side of the court. The Serb then over-hits his forehand, expecting Ferrer to come to the net for a volley, but the Spaniard leaves it to go long.

Djokovic's serve is still far too good for Ferrer, the Serb has only dropped two points while serving since the start of the match. The top seed finishes the game with another ace.

BREAK! Ferrer finds his first ace of the match, but some stunning returns from Djokovic helps take the game to deuce. Ferrer's backhand fails to clear the net, handing Djokovic break point, which he converts on the next point.

Yet another easy game for Djokovic. Ferrer gets in to a rally with his opponent but sends the ball to the net, and takes a defensive approach to the rest of the game, allowing the world number one to dominate.

BREAK! Some superb play from Djokovic brings up three break points, and Ferrer hands him the break with a double fault. The Spaniard's head drops as he returns to his chair, it looks like he's already resigned to defeat.

Ferrer shows a bit of fight, taking a 30-15 lead having been boosted by winning a hawkeye review. However, Djokovic fights back, taking the game with some brilliant forehand strokes, and he's just one game away from a two-set lead.

Djokovic looks to be in control of the game, but Ferrer digs deep to get back in to it, before the Serb gets his backhand stuck in the net. The top seed will now serve for the set.

SET! Djokovic 6-2 6-2 Ferrer

A cross-court forehand smash brings up two set points for Djokovic. Ferrer is wrong-footed behind the baseline and fails for make the return, giving Djokovic a two-set lead in just over an hour.

Ferrer has overturned a two-set deficit four times in Grand Slams.

BREAK! Djokovic earns a break point after Ferrer hits a forehand long at the end of a 32-stroke rally. The world number five misses his first serve before hitting another long forehand to give Djokovic the break.

Ferrer makes a fantastic return against a Djokovic drop shot before smashing the ball past the top seed. However, the Serb responds with an ace, and the Spaniard returns a backhand to the net to give Djokovic the game.

BREAK! Ferrer looks empty and Djokovic capitalises on this by sending his opponent all around the court, eventually earning him three break points, which takes the top seed to an easy 3-0 lead in the third set.

Djokovic races to a 40-0 lead. Ferrer finds a good forehand to take a point from the world number one. The top seed smashes a forehand past Ferrer to take the game, but it's called wide. A challenge from the Serbian reveals the call is wrong, and hands Djokovic the game.

Ferrer has his first game of the set after finding some good shots. After taking a 40-15 lead, Ferrer takes Djokovic out wide before firing a forehand into an open court to claim the game.

Djokovic controls the game from the baseline, before running in to the net for a backhand volley. Ferrer stretches high to make the return but misses the ball. A Ferrer forehand to the net leaves Djokovic just one game away from the final.

Djokovic has a match point.

GAME, SET AND MATCH! Djokovic 6-2 6-2 6-1 Ferrer

Ferrer takes a 40-30 lead in the game, but a long forehand and double fault bring up the match point for Djokovic, which he converts at the first time of asking. That was a devastating display from the world number one, cruising in just over 1 hour and 20 minutes.

Djokovic said after the match: "I played incredible tennis, I felt very comfortable and very confident from the start. This is definitely one of the best performances I ever had in my career."

"I know [Ferrer is] mentally very strong and he bounces back really fast if you give him opportunities. I don't expect myself always to play this well but hopefully I can maintain my levels for the final."

"I know this has been my most successful slam, I love this court, thank you all for coming."

Neither Andy Murray nor Roger Federer will have particularly enjoyed watching that! The winner of their semi-final tomorrow will face the world number one in Sunday's final with a day less to recover and prepare.

That's all from the Australian Open today. Don't forget to join Sports Mole again tomorrow as Britain's Andy Murray looks to make the final of the tournament for the third time in his career. Until then, thanks for joining us.

ID:65753: cacheID:65753:1false2false3false:QQ:: from db desktop :LenBod:restore:19164:
Restore Data
Share this article now:
Did you know...?
Jo Wilfried Tsonga in action in the ATP Finals
Read Next:
Tsonga: 'Women more emotionally unstable than men'

rhs 2.0
Todays Game Header Right

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!