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Unseeded Tsonga trounces Nadal
January 24, 2008 16:44 IST
Last Updated: January 24, 2008 17:21 IST
Unseeded Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga pulled off a stunning upset to beat second seed Rafael Nadal [Images] 6-2, 6-3, 6-2 in the Australian Open semi-finals on Thursday.
The world number 38, playing just his fifth Grand Slam tournament, simply blew the Spaniard off court in just under two hours to reach Sunday's final against top seed Roger Federer [Images] or third seed Novak Djokovic.
"It is just amazing, unbelievable, nothing could stop me today," Tsonga said in a courtside interview.
"I tried to hit everything and everything went in, so what can I say?"
"My family said it is like a dream for them, everybody in France [Images] is happy for me. I will try to do my best for the final."
Tsonga knocked out seeds Andy Murray, Richard Gasquet and Mikhail Youzhny on his way to the last four and he came out with all guns blazing, peppering Nadal with a barrage of booming serves and groundstrokes to take the opening set in 32 minutes.
Nadal was rattled but the second set went with serve until the Spaniard cracked again in the eighth game, Tsonga mixing up his shots cleverly to frustrate the three-times French Open champion.
Nadal had not dropped a set in the tournament but he was powerless to contain Tsonga who broke serve twice more in the third set before serving out to clinch victory on his first match point.
Tsonga, 22, will be the third Frenchman to play in the Australian Open final after Jean Borotra in 1928 and Arnaud Clement in 2001.
Cypriot Marcos Baghdatis was the last unseeded player to reach the men's final at Melbourne Park, in 2006.
Federer plays Djokovic in the second semi-final on Friday.