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Murray books Wawrinka showdown at French Open

Tennis

World number one Andy Murray advanced to his fifth French Open semi-final on Wednesday, defeating Japanese eighth seed Kei Nishikori 2-6, 6-1, 7-6 (7/0), 6-1.

Murray, who was runner-up to Novak Djokovic at Roland Garros last year, will meet 2015 champion Stan Wawrinka for a spot in Sunday's final.

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Andy Murray clenches his fist after scoring a point against Japan's Kei Nishikori. Photo: David Vincent/AP

Nishikori outduelled Murray in a five-set classic at last year's US Open and looked capable of a repeat success as he rolled through the opening set.

But Murray responded by taking the second set with ease and stormed through a third-set tie-break before finishing off a tiring Nishikori to seal a fourth successive semi-final appearance in Paris.

"I needed to start putting more pace on my shots, he was dictating all the points in the first set. It was windy, so the timing was difficult, but once I was able to get into a rhythm and keep him away from the baseline, that made the difference," said Murray.

The Scot set up a semi-final rematch with third seed Wawrinka after beating the Swiss in four sets at the same stage of the tournament a year ago.

"He's played fantastic this tournament so far," Murray said of the 32-year-old, the oldest Roland Garros semi-finalist since Jimmy Connors in 1985.

"Last year I had to play one of my best matches on clay to beat him. I know it will be tough but I’ll fight as hard as I can.

"It hasn’t always been easy for me here, but these last few years have been great."

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