Federer closing in on seventh Halle tilte

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iol spt june14 Federer-Halle Bongarts/Getty Images Defending champion Roger Federer will bid for a seventh Halle title after beating Japan's Kei Nishikori 6-3, 7-6 (7/4) in the semi-final of the grasscourt tournament. Photo by Thomas Starke/Bongarts/Getty Images

Halle Westfalen, Germany – Defending champion Roger Federer will bid for a seventh Halle title after beating Japan's Kei Nishikori 6-3, 7-6 (7/4) in the semi-final of the grasscourt tournament.

Swiss Federer, ranked fourth in the world, will meet 69th-ranked Alejandro Falla in the title match after the Colombian earlier upset Germany's Philipp Kohlschreiber in the first semi-final.

Kohlschreiber, the 2011 winner, fell 5-7, 7-6 (7/5), 6-4 to the 30-year-old South American.

Federer, 32, kicked off his grasscourt campaign in Halle as he bids for a boost ahead of his latest assault on Wimbledon where he has been champion on seven occasions.

Halle was the site of his only title in 2013 and is the tournament where he first appeared in 2005 as a 19-year-old.

For Falla, it will be his second career ATP final, after losing to Ivo Karlovic of Croatia last year in Bogota, in only his second appearance at Halle after losing to Federer in the 2010 first round.

Kohlschreiber, ranked world 27 and the 2011 champion, was feeling the effects of his quarter-final clash on Friday when he was taken to three sets by compatriot Dustin Brown before prevailing 18-16 in the third set tie-break.

Brown had shocked world number one Rafael Nadal in straight sets in the second round. – Sapa-AFP


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