After finally passing his Novak Djokovic test, Stanislas Wawrinka finds Tomas Berdych standing in between him and a first-ever Grand Slam final in the 2014 Australian Open.
Wawrinka defeated Djokovic in yet another five-set thriller on Tuesday, ending the Serbian’s three-year reign as Australian champion, and avenging his loss to him in last year’s round of 32 Down Under. More importantly, the 2-6, 6-4, 6-2, 3-6, 9-7 victory sends the talented Swiss netter to a semifinal date with Berdych, who is making an unexpected run of his own in Melbourne.
Berdych defeated No. 3 seed David Ferrer in four sets Tuesday to reach his first-ever Australian semifinal, and is seeking to add to the Wimbledon final he reached in 2010 before falling to Rafael Nadal.
Albeit unexpected, the matchup between the two men should be an entertaining battle of power and determination considering their strong performances during this Australian fortnight and the quality of their careers overall. Combined, Wawrinka and Berdych have won 13 titles, and one of them will be making a first-ever appearance in the Australian Open finals come Sunday.
While we’ll have to wait to find out which one continues the surprising journey toward Slam glory, here is a look at what to expect when they take the court against one another on Thursday.