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Federer and Murray into Thailand Open final
Updated: 2005-10-01 21:13

BANGKOK, Thailand (AP) _ Defending champion Roger Federer downed Jarkko Nieminem of Finland 6-3, 6-4 Saturday to reach the Thailand Open final.

Top-seeded Federer will now face British teenager Andy Murray, who rallied from a set down to upset seventh-seeded Paradorn Srichaphan of Thailand 6-7 (3) 7-5 6-2.

Paradorn was Murray's third high-profile victim this tournament after the Briton downed fifth-seeded Robin Soderling of Sweden in the second round and American No. 3 Robby Ginepri in the quarterfinals.

Federer lost the opening game during which he missed an easy forehand to face a break point, but rebounded to beat Nieminem in 57 minutes for his 30th consecutive win. He has not lost since falling to Raphael Nadal in the French Open semifinals.

Play went with serves until in the sixth game of the first set, when Federer produced a drop shot to set up a triple break point. Nieminem buried a forehand into the net to give the Swiss a lead at 4-2.

Nieminem had a chance to break at 1-2 in the second set, but Federer turned to his attacking groundstrokes and held for 2-2 with an ace. After exchanging long rallies, Federer broke away in the sixth game to lead 4-2 and never looked back.

"It was a fantastic match," said Federer. "I didn't come here well-prepared because I just came from Davis Cup. But so far it's been great results for me. Playing Paradorn (Srichaphan) on his home ground will be fantastic."

After exchanging early breaks, Srichaphan and Murray held on to their serves to force the tie-break in the first set.

Murray appeared in trouble after he hurt his wrist while chasing the ball in the second set, but Paradorn succumbed to too many errors to capitalize. Murray managed a break in the sixth game of the third set and finished off the match with a backhand down the line winner.

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