Federer, Djokovic on clash course

Simona Halep Western & Southern Open Cincinnati

Federer, a seven-time champion here, will be bidding to increase his tournament leading total, while Djokovic is keen to win the only Masters 1000 tournament missing from his trophy collection.

Everyone knows who's favoured in this one.

Djokovic, who has never won the tournament, beat 2016 victor Cilic 6-4 3-6 6-3 in two and a half hours.

Djovokic showed his desire for victory during the quarter-finals when, angered by his poor play in the opening set, he slammed his racket on the court before rallying for a 7-5 4-6 6-3 victory over Milos Raonic. Raonic was up in the set 5-3, but Djokovic would win, 7-5.

Prior to his third-round showing in Toronto last week, Wawrinka had posted just six wins this year, against 11 losses and was still searching for form. Djokovic has a 23-22 head-to-head edge but Federer has won all three of their Cincinnati final meetings. The racket-busting became a turning point., as he went on to do the business.

Novak Djokovic closed in on the one title that has eluded him, reaching the final of the Western & Southern Open on Saturday with a three-set victory over Marin Cilic.

"It's great to be back in the finals, against Novak in particular", Federer said. The match was suspended during the third round Thursday after significant rain delays greatly affected the day's schedule of matches.

The result sets up the prospect of a mouth-watering final between Djokovic and Roger Federer, one of the greatest rivalries in the history of the sport. Like Djokovic, she's never won the title, losing both of her chances, including the title match past year to Garbine Muguruza.

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Halep, who was beaten in last year's Cincinnati final by Garbine Muguruza, is aiming for a second title in eight days and fourth in 2018 after she won the WTA event in Montreal.

Bertens, from the Netherlands, is an unexpected finalist, winning only one match during three previous appearances in Cincinnati.

"It's going to be a big challenge for me to play another final and win it", she said.

Known as more of a clay court player, Bertens has reached a hard-court final for the first time, spending more time getting accustomed to the different style of play. "It was a tough match, but I'm so glad to be in the final". There's also a lot at stake for me.

No. 2 Caroline Wozniacki retired from her match Wednesday night because of an injured left knee, her second straight disappointing exit from a tournament.

"We went home around 10.30, came back this morning again to play him, and then (had a) couple hours of rest. To see where I was also few weeks ago, I'm really happy to be here", explained Wawrinka, who is expected to return to the top-100 when the new rankings are released on Monday.

"I got my energy back for the third set, a momentum shift was good for me. I was really trying, but nothing".

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