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Australian Open: Is it now or never for Roger Federer?

By Chaitan Papnai | Updated: Jan 24, 2014, 16:05 PM IST

Melbourne: Arguably the greatest tennis player of all time, Roger Federer has the biggest match of his twilight career on Friday, when he lock horns with his arch-rival and world number one Rafael Nadal in the second semi-final of Australian Open 2014.

If we go by the track records of their rivalry then the record seventeen-time Grand Slam winner doesn`t stand anywhere against his Spanish rival.

Last time when the Swiss beat Rafa in a Grand Slam tournament was way back in 2007, during one of their Wimbledon finals. And when it comes to hard courts, he never got the better of the southpaw, who is also the top seed of the tournament.

Even if we see Federer`s form in the recent past, it was certainly all time low. But since the tournament has started, FedEx has made an excellent comeback and shown the glimpse of his former self. He is high on confidence after beating players like Jo-Wilfred Tsonga and then Wimbledon Champion Andy Murray to book the semifinal spot. Presence of legendary player like Stefan Edberg in his box, as his new coach must give this ageing master a much needed confidence. But the fact that his semi-final opponent, Rafael Nadal is not at the top of his game in this tournament and on top of it, a blister on his left hand could have come at a better time for Federer to get the better of the Spaniard.

Federer knew the fact himself that he might not get a better chance than this in his career to take his Grand Slam tally to eighteen. So, one can say that for Federer it`s now or never.