Tennis: In-form Federer flies into final

Roger Federer hits a return against Milos Raonic.  REUTERS/Facundo Arrizabalaga/Pool
Roger Federer hits a return against Milos Raonic. REUTERS/Facundo Arrizabalaga/Pool
Roger Federer reached a ninth Wimbledon final after emerging unscathed from the crosshairs of bullet-serving giant Milos Raonic, winning 6-4 6-4 6-4 with a masterful display of the grasscourt arts.

Chasing a record eighth title at the All England Club, Federer set up a mouthwatering final against top seed and 2011 champion Novak Djokovic with an almost casual demolition of the 23-year-old Canadian, who looked overawed by the magnitude of the occasion.

The 17-time grand slam champion broke in the opening game and then comfortably saw out the first set before breaking decisively in the ninth games of both the second and third sets, with his opponent unable to gain a foothold in the match.

The 32-year-old Swiss played most of the match at walking pace and finished off his opponent in one hour 41 minutes, clenching his fist in a restrained celebration when Raonic hit a backhand return wide on match point.

"I think that was unbelievably effective," said Federer, who has been in imperious form on the grass this year after winning in Halle and motoring through the early rounds at Wimbledon.

"I am extremely happy to be in another final. I have played some great tennis, under pressure as well at times because I didn't play so well here last year."

Having reached a 25th grand slam final, Federer will face Djokovic in Sunday's showpiece with the confidence of an 18-16 winning record against the Serb.

"It's always great, we always have good matches against each other and we have played (each other) a lot in the past six months and it has gone back and forth a little bit," Federer told the BBC.

"He is a great champion and he has been around now for a long time, so he is used to these occasions. He has already got the trophy here so he knows how to get it done."

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