Federer Advances to 1st Final of Season

Top-ranked player will play fourth-ranked Davydenko
By Mitch Pritchard,  Newser User
Posted Apr 19, 2008 5:36 PM CDT
Nikolay Davydenko, from Russia, returns a ball to Florent Serra, from France, during their semifinals match of the Estoril Tennis Open in Oeiras, outside Lisbon, today.    (AP Photo/Steven Governo)
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(Newser) – Roger Federer aims for his first title of the season, facing Nikolay Davydenko in the final of the Estoril Open. The top-ranked Federer rallied to defeat Denis Gremelmayr 2-6, 7-5, 6-1 today in the semifinal. It's been eight years since Federer needed five tournaments to get a shot at his first trophy of season. The fourth-ranked Davydenko is 0-11 against Federer.

"I definitely feel more comfortable. The moving, the sliding, just the way I see the game today is much better," Federer said. Federer's previous best result in 2008 had been a semifinal loss to eventual champion Novak Djokovic at the Australian Open in January. He was slowed by mononucleosis early in the season. Davydenko, the 2003 champion, defeated Florent Serra of France 6-2, 6-2 in the other semifinal match.