Federer and Murray set up semi-final clash
CINCINNATI (Reuters) - The world's top two will meet in the Cincinnati Masters semi-finals after Roger Federer and Andy Murray won contrasting matches on Friday.
Top seed Federer cruised past former world number one Lleyton Hewitt 6-3 6-4 while holder Murray had to battle back to beat Frenchman Julien Benneteau 4-6 6-3 6-1.
Federer and second-ranked Murray have met eight times before, the Scot registering six wins.
"He (Murray) has been more or less the best player in the world on hard courts this year," the Swiss said in a courtside interview.
"I know it's going to be a very tough match. I just have to come out with my game plan and hope it works."
Federer was never troubled by Hewitt, breaking once in each set.
Briton Murray, chasing back-to-back Masters Series titles after his win in Montreal last weekend, recovered from a set and 2-0 down to take his winning streak to eight matches.
Frenchman Benneteau, a lucky loser entrant after the withdrawal of Juan Martin del Potro, took advantage of a below-par performance from his opponent in the first set.
When the Scot dropped his serve in the second game of the second set, he looked in danger of defeat to world number 55 Benneteau.
However an epic 53-shot rally won by Murray changed the match completely and after breaking back, he dropped just two more games.
"I played a really poor first set," said the world number two. "I served really badly.
"That point made a big difference. I think he was very tired after that rally as well. I managed to stay strong after that.
"When you can come through matches like that, it's a lot better. Everyone can win when they play good tennis."
Later on Friday, former world number one Rafa Nadal plays Czech Tomas Berdych while fourth seed Novak Djokovic takes on Frenchman Gilles Simon.
(Editing by Tony Jimenez. To query or comment on this story email email@example.com)
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