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US Open 2012 daily report: Murray into fifth major final

Andy Murray at the US Open 2012
by Alexandra Willis
Sunday 9 September 2012

The major stories from days 12 and 13 of the 2012 US Open at Flushing Meadows, New York...

Fifth time lucky for Murray?
When he withdrew from Toronto and lost in the first round of Cincinnati, Andy Murray said it wouldn't matter that he hadn't had a better run up to the year's fourth and final Grand Slam in Flushing Meadows, New York. Just over two weeks later, Murray has been proved precisely right. The British No.1 muscled past Tomas Berdych, surviving dropping the first set and the Czech's resurgence in the fourth to win their semi-final 5-7, 6-2, 6-1, 7-6(7) and reach his second US Open final.

The win, which guarantees that Murray will overtake Rafael Nadal to become world No.3 when the new rankings are published next three, announces Murray's arrival into his fifth Grand Slam singles final, following his appearance in the 2009 US Open final, 2010 and 2011 Australian Open finals, and 2012 Wimbledon final.   

Murray did exactly what was needed against the flashy but dangerous Berdych, handling very tricky wind conditions far better than Roger Federer's conqueror, Murray describing them as the hardest conditions he had ever played in. 

"It was brutal to play in that wind, it's hard to describe," Murray said after the match. "The ball was sometimes stopping, moving the other way, and it was hard to serve, so the focus wasn't really on going for aces, just getting the first serve in. Those are probably the hardest conditions I've ever had to play in."

"The wind was one part of opponent, so it was a really tough one," Berdych said. "It affects my serve a lot because I have a higher toss. When I'm not able to serve, and go for the first serve and I'm not making straight points from the serve, then that's not my game. So actually, it was quite hard to adjust to that, because I'm normally not used to that. Of course I don't like to lose the match, and not a match like this in the semis when I thought that I had a pretty good chance. But, you know, the best word I can say is that the wind blew it away from me."

Hitting just 20 unforced errors to Berdych's 64, Murray looked like he would be taken to a fifth set as the Czech powered ahead in the fourth set tie-break. But Murray gritted his way back in, sealing the win half an hour before the torrential rains came. 

Whatever the weather
Poor New York. Having survived torrential rain storms on and off during the two weeks of the Open, the weather gods turned things up a notch as Super Saturday was hit by flash floods and a tornado warning. With rain delaying the start of play, the car park resembling a pond rather than a piece of tarmac, the women's final between Serena Williams and Victoria Azarenka was postponed to Sunday. The wet weather held off long enough for Andy Murray to make it through his semi-final. But towards the business end of the first set between Novak Djokovic and David Ferrer, with the Spaniard up 5-2, the match was abruptly halted as a tornado threatened to tear its way through Flushing Meadows. With Arthur Ashe Stadium evacuated, and the rest of their semi-final delayed to Sunday, the weather decreed that for the fifth year in a row, the men's singles final would take place on the third Monday. Enter the roof debate again. 

Serena into second straight final
As expected, Serena Williams had little difficulty sweeping past Sara Errani to reach her second straight US Open final, a year after she was outplayed by Sam Stosur on Arthur Ashe. Her opponent will be Victoria Azarenka, who screeched past Maria Sharapova in an epic and turbulent three sets. Serena is the favourite on paper, but Azarenka could be saving her best for last. A win for either player will halt the run of seven different Grand Slam champions in the women's singles over the past two years. The winner will also be the first woman to win two Grand Slams in a calendar year since Serena won the Australian Open and Wimbledon in 2010.

A British victory
Ever since the all-British final between George Morgan, Lewis Burton, Liam Broady and Tom Farquharson at Wimbledon in 2010, boys' doubles has been a rich hunting ground for British juniors at the junior Grand Slams, Broady winning the Australian Open doubles earlier this year with Josh Ward-Hibbert, and Morgan winning the Wimbledon doubles in 2011. Another British name was added to the trophy list as Kyle Edmund won the US Open boys' doubles title with Portugal's Frederico Silva, overcoming the all-Australian team of Nick Kyrgios and Jordan Thompson, 5-7, 6-4, 1-0 (6).

In the girls' doubles, Taylor Townsend and Gabrielle Andrews picked up the title. 

Another chance for Broady?
Competing in the Wimbledon boy's singles final in 2011, British junior Liam Broady led by a set and a break before Australian Luke Saville came surging back to deny the Stockport left-hander. Just over a year after that crushing defeat, Broady has a second shot at junior Grand Slam glory as he takes on Wimbledon champion Filip Peliwo in the US Open final. If he wins, it will be the second straight British win in a row, after Oliver Golding claimed last year's title.  

Coming up on Sunday
Arthur Ashe Stadium
11am Men's singles semi-final 
Novak Djokovic (SRB) [2] v David Ferrer (ESP) [4] to finish

Not before 4.30pm Women's singles final
Serena Williams (USA) [4] v Victoria Azarenka (BLR) [1] 

Louis Armstrong Stadium
1.30pm Women's doubles final
Andrea Hlavackova and Lucie Hradecka (CZE) [3] v Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci (ITA) [2]

Court 11
12pm Girls' singles final
Annett Kontaveit (EST) [12] v Samantha Crawford (USA)

Court 17
12pm Boys' singles final
Liam Broady (GBR) [13] v Filip Peliwo (CAN) [2] 

For full scores, draws and results, and videos from Flushing Meadows, check out the US Open official website.


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