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Murray through to title clash

January 5, 2013 13:36 pm

Olympic gold medallist and top seed Andy Murray advanced to the final of the Brisbane International as his Japanese opponent Kei Nishikori was forced to withdraw in the second set of their last-four clash.

Nishikori started the semi-final strongly against the world number three but was 6-4 2-0 down when he threw in the towel because of a knee problem.

Murray, who beat the 23-year-old in the quarter-finals of last season's Australian Open, was a break down in the first set but won five games in a row to seal it against his fifth-seeded opponent, who took a medical timeout at the end of the set.

Murray broke in the first game of the second set and backed it up by holding his service game, at which point Nishikori decided enough was enough.

In the final Murray will face Grigor Dimitrov, who beat Marcos Baghdatis of Cyprus 6-3 5-7 7-6 (7/5).

Whereas Murray was off court in 45 minutes, the Bulgarian, ranked 48th in the world, was pushed to the limit in a little under two-and-a-half hours of tennis against Baghdatis.

Murray beat the up-and-coming Dimitrov in their only previous meeting in Bangkok last year, and said: "I've served pretty well for the majority of the tournament and I've moved better every single match.

"Grigor plays with a lot of variety and he can play a lot of shots. He's one of the few guys coming through with a single-handed backhand as well, so he uses a lot more slice."

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