Roger Federer eliminates rival Rafael Nadal in semis to reach Wimbledon final

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SportsPulse: Roger Federer is into the title match at Wimbledon after a semifinal victory over longtime rival Rafael Nadal. USA TODAY Sports’ Dan Wolken breaks down Federer’s showdown in the final against Novak Djokovic.
USA TODAY

Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly listed Roger Federer’s number of Wimbledon titles.

In the 40th meeting between two tennis greats, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal added another exhilarating chapter to their rivalry Friday in the Wimbledon semifinals. They delivered a first-set tiebreak, ample momentum shifts and poetic rallies that have defined their showdowns over the last 15 years. 

Federer, Wimbledon’s No. 2 seed at 37, survived No. 3-seeded Nadal 7-6 (7-3), 1-6, 6-3, 6-4 to advance to his 12th final at the All England Club. He’ll face top-seeded Novak Djokovic, vying for his ninth Wimbledon trophy Sunday. A win in the final would make Federer the oldest to ever win a Grand Slam and add to his record total of 20 major singles titles, his last coming in 2018’s Australian Open. 

In Friday’s showdown, Federer came out on the attack and won the first set on a tiebreak 7-3. But Nadal made quick work of Federer in…

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