Chung Retires Hurt, As Roger Federer Cruises To 7th Australian Open Final
World number two, Roger Federer is through to another Australian Open final, after Hyeon Chung retired in their semi-final clash on Friday.
The 36-year-old defending champion led 6-1 5-2 when 21-year-old Chung was forced to call it quits, after being treated for a blister on his left foot.
The Swiss received a free pass into the men’s final where he will face sixth seed Marin Cilic on Sunday.
It means Federer is now seeking a sixth Australian and 20th Grand Slam title.
Reacting to Chung’s early call-in, after the win Federer said, “I thought the first set was normal.
“I couldn’t tell what was going on with my opponent.
“In the second set I felt he was getting slower. He’s had a problem with the blister. It hurts – a lot. At some point it’s too much and you make things worse.
“Clearly I’m happy to be in the final – but not like this. He’s had such a wonderful tournament.”
Asked about facing Marin Cilic in Sunday’s final, the Swiss said: “He brings power, he brings everything. He had a similar problem like Chung had in the Wimbledon final.
“Not having a brutal semi-final, he’ll have rest and we’ll see a different Marin Cilic this time. He crushed me in the US Open semi-finals.
“I’m excited to play him. We actually played together on vacation in the Maldives. We were both looking for a hitting partner. I told him to practice in the tropicals helped me get to the finals!”