Berdych powers into first grand slam semi-final

Paris: Czech Tomas Berdych bulldozed his way past Russia`s Mikhail Youzhny 6-3, 6-1, 6-2 at the French Open to reach his first grand slam semi-final.

The 24-year-old, seeded 15th, fired down 36 winners as he romped past the 11th seed to set up a clash with Sweden`s Robin Soderling, a shock winner over world number one Roger Federer.

As he was against fourth seed Andy Murray in the previous round, Berdych was simply too powerful and too accurate, leaving Youzhny scrambling in the damp conditions.

The Russian tried to mix up the patterns of play but each time Berdych just leant into another winner and victory came after just one hour 54 minutes.

Berdych has yet to drop a set in the tournament but stopped short of saying whether he was playing the best tennis of his career.

"This is the question everybody likes," he said. "It`s tough to say, because I hope not. I hope that I can still bring something more and I can keep it for a long period of time.”

"I`m playing well, definitely. That`s right and I`m happy for it. But I just want to keep (things) a little bit lower. Kind of `it`s not that good and still I can bring something better for the next games`."

Berdych said it would take some time for his achievements in Paris to sink in.

"It`s quite a lot of emotions just coming through and it`s just too quick after the match," he said. "I don`t have too much time to be thinking about (the fact that) I have reached my first semi-final in a grand slam."

Bureau Report