Stan Wawrinka is back into semi-finals of the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals for the third straight year. The No. 4-seeded Swiss defeated No. 4 Andy Murray 7-6(4), 6-4 on Friday at The O2. He will next face countryman Roger Fededer in an all-Swiss final-four showdown.
Wawrinka’s win denied Murray a chance to secure the year-end No. 2 in the Emirates ATP Rankings. Just days ahead of the Great Britain vs. Belgium Davis Cup final, he was one win away from what would be the highest year-end ranking of his career. He still has a chance at No. 2 if Federer loses a match this week.
“I made too many errors,” said Murray, who totaled 30 in the losing effort. “It was tough. I couldn’t quite get the balance. Because when I was going for my shots, I felt like I was making errors.
“He serves big,” Murray continued. “At certain points in the match, he was hitting the ball very hard off both sides, playing sort of high-risk tennis, making a lot of winners.”
The Group Ilie Nastase foes exchanged breaks in the eighth and ninth game of the tense 66-minute opening set, which was decided in a tie-break. Murray led 4-2 in the stanza, but Wawrinka would reel off five unanswered points to seal it. He is now 34-12 in tie-breaks, best