Roger Federer cruised past Borna Coric to reach his ninth Dubai Tennis Championships final, where he will meet Novak Djokovic.
The Swiss is chasing a seventh crown at this ATP 500 hard-court event, and was in fine form on Friday in dispatching lucky loser Coric – conqueror of Andy Murray on Thursday – 6-2 6-1.
Federer dominated throughout, and only suffered a slight blip when he was broken in game five of the first set.
He soon recovered his composure, though, reeling off the next three games to take the set, before romping to victory in the second, wrapping up the win in just 57 minutes.
“Maybe I was a bit tentative in the beginning, but I was still able to get off to somewhat of a good start, not being broken early, then breaking him right away,” Federer said.
“I felt like after five games I knew more or less what to expect, and I realised what had worked until that point and what had not.
“I can see why he has so far caused difficulties for some of the top guys and he still has a lot of room for improvement in his game.
“He does a really good job for a big guy. It’s unbelievable how in the past 10 years we have seen so many big guys moving well from the baseline.
“I think he returns very well, especially off second serves, and that’s such a huge part of today’s game, I believe.”
Federer will now face top seed Djokovic, who had to work somewhat harder to overcome Tomas Berdych 6-0 5-7 6-4.
It seemed as though the Serb was on for a routine victory when he wrapped up the first set in just 24 minutes, but Berdych hit back to force a decider.
Djokovic, a four-time winner of this tournament, recovered well in the final set and sealed the crucial break in game five.
It means a fifth final in seven years for the world number one, while for Berdych – runner-up in each of the last two years – it was another case of so near, yet so far.