Australian Open 2013: What to Watch for in Novak Djokovic-David Ferrer Semifinal

Mike ShiekmanFeatured ColumnistJanuary 22, 2013

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 09:  Novak Djokovic of Serbia celebrates a point during his men's singles semifinal match against David Ferrer of Spain on Day Fourteen of the 2012 US Open at USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center on September 9, 2012 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

One half of the Australian Open semifinals will feature a quarterfinal rematch from last year, as Novak Djokovic and David Ferrer will square off.

Djokovic took four sets to dispose of Tomas Berdych, while Ferrer needed to go the distance to take care of Nicolas Almagro in the quarters.

Their Aussie Open conquests had been polar opposites before the quarters; Djokovic was almost stunned by Stanislas Wawrinka in the fourth round, while Ferrer had yet to lose a set.

The semifinal will raise the stakes, bringing together two familiar foes in a battle for a finals berth.

Expect a dogfight of a tennis match in this semifinal, as both Djoker and Ferrer like to wear down their opponents by rallying until they make a mistake. That should make for an energetic match full of continuous drama.

While Ferrer has beaten Djokovic five times in his career, the majority of which have been on a clay surface.

Ferrer may not have a Grand Slam title to his name, but he has become a mainstay in the bracket’s later rounds. This semifinal marks his third in his past four Slam tournaments and second in three years in the Aussie Open.

The 5’8” underdog will certainly bring the fight, as he implements a shifty counterattacking style that will challenge the world’s No. 1 player throughout.

Djoker, on the other hand, will use the hard court to his advantage and many of the tricks he’s been successful with against Ferrer previously.

Djokovic has won the last five matches against Ferrer, all of which came on a hard court. He won last year's quarters in straight sets.

Above all else, Ferrer will need to find some late-match rallies to keep up with Djokovic. He has worn down Ferrer as the match has gone on in every recent battle they’ve had.


Mike Shiekman is a Breaking News Writer for Bleacher Report.