Roger Federer vs. Novak Djokovic in Australian Open semifinal: How to watch

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The 2020 Australian Open will have its biggest showdown in the classic rivalry between Roger Federer and defending champion Novak Djokovic on Thursday night. The two tennis stars face off in the Semifinals for a shot at another major title and a record prize of $4.12 million. Here is what to know and how to tune in for another chapter in the Federer vs. Djokovic rivalry.

When is the match?

The match is set to begin on Thursday, January 30 at 7:00 p.m. ET.

How can I watch the Australian Open Semifinals?

If you are watching in the US, Federer vs. Djokovic will be broadcast by ESPN and the Tennis Channel. Those with access can enjoy it on TV as part of their usual subscription package.

For those looking to stream, the network’s subscription service ESPN+ will carry the match.

Here are some listings around the globe:

  • Africa: BeIN Sports, EuroSport, SuperSport
  • Asia Pacific & Oceania: ESPN, Fox Sports, Nine, BTV, CCTV, FBC, SINA, GDTV, QIY, NHK, Sky Sports, Sony Six, W_O_W_O_W
  • Canada: TSN, RDS
  • Central Asia: EuroSport, Sony Six
  • Europe: EuroSport, ServusTV
  • Latin America & Caribbean: ESPN
  • Middle East: BeIN Sports, EuroSport
  • United States: ESPN and ESPN2, ESPN+, ESPN3 and Tennis Channel

Where is it being played? 

The Australian Open is held in Melbourne, Australia and played at Melbourne Park on a hard surface court.

How much are tickets?

The cheapest ticket for the Australian Open Semifinals Night is currently going for $431.85 at Stubhub, with the most expensive going for $1,446.74.

What road did each player take to get to the Semifinals?

Federer: In the opening round, the Swiss tennis star and No. 3 seed took down American Steve Johnson in three sets. Federer did the same to Filip Krajinovic in the second round, but was pushed to five sets against John Millman in the third round and four sets against Marton Fucsovics in the fourth. Closing out his journey to the Semifinals, Federer took down American Tennys Sandgren in four sets on Monday, January 27.

Djokovic: The Serbian and No. 2 seed in the tournament took a slightly different route than Federer, playing Jan-Lennard Struff to five sets in the first round, but sweeping each of his four remaining competitors to reach the Semifinals.

Who will the winner play in the Finals?

Possibly Dominic Thiem, who upset top seed Rafael Nadal in a four-hour, 10-minute match, 7-6 (3), 7-6 (4), 4-6, 7-6 (6). Or it will be Thiem’s semifinal opponent, Alexander Zverev.

What is the head-to-head record between Federer and Djokovic?

Djokovic currently holds the lead against Federer with a record of 26-23. Federer won the previous match between the two at the 2019 ATP Finals tournament, but Djokovic bested Federer in the 2019 Wimbledon Finals and has won 9 of the last 12 against the Swiss legend, dating back to 2015. 

Does Federer or Djokovic have more majors wins?

Federer holds the record for most major singles titles for a male at 20. Djokovic, the 2019 Australian Open champion, is not far behind Federer with 16 major titles.

How many Australian Open titles have Federer and Djokovic won?

Djokovic holds the record with seven Australian Open titles, but Federer is one off of that mark with six.

Australian bush fires

Melbourne hasn’t been as badly affected as Canberra or Sydney by the fires, however, thanks to changing winds air pollution shot up to “hazardous” levels in the week running up to the event.

While the tournament is proceeding as scheduled, umpires have been told to stop play if air monitoring shows it is too dangerous to continue.

Kenenisa Bekele still eyes Eliud Kipchoge’s marathon world record, but a duel must wait

Kenenisa Bekele
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LONDON — Kenenisa Bekele made headlines last week by declaring “of course I am the best” long distance runner ever. But the Ethiopian was fifth-best at Sunday’s London Marathon, finishing 74 seconds behind Kenya’s Amos Kipruto.

Bekele, 40, clocked 2:05:53, the fastest-ever marathon by a runner 40 years or older. He was with the lead pack until being dropped in the 21st mile.

But Bekele estimated he could have run 90 to 120 seconds faster had he not missed parts of six weeks of training with hip and joint injuries.

“I expect better even if the preparation is short,” he said. “I know my talent and I know my capacity, but really I couldn’t achieve what I expect.”

Bekele is the second-fastest marathoner in history behind Kenya’s Eliud Kipchoge, who broke his own world record by clocking 2:01:09 at the Berlin Marathon last week.

“I am happy when I see Eliud Kipchoge run that time,” Bekele said. “It motivates all athletes who really expect to do the same thing.”

LONDON MARATHON: Results

Bekele’s best time was within two seconds of Kipchoge’s previous world record (2:01:39). He described breaking Kipchoge’s new mark as the “main goal” for the rest of his career.

“Yes, I hope, one day it will happen, of course,” Bekele said. “With good preparation, I don’t know when, but we will see one more time.”

Nobody has won more London Marathons than Kipchoge, a four-time champion who set the course record (2:02:37) in 2019. But the two-time Olympic marathon champion did not run this year in London, as elite marathoners typically choose to enter one race each spring and fall.

Bekele does not know which race he will enter in the spring. But it will not be against Kipchoge.

“I need to show something first,” Bekele said. “I need to run a fast time. I have to check myself. This is not enough.”

Kipchoge will try to become the first runner to win three Olympic marathon titles at the Paris Games. Bekele, who will be 42 in 2024, has not committed to trying to qualify for the Ethiopian team.

“There’s a long time to go before Paris,” Bekele said. “At this moment I am not decided. I have to show something.”

So who is the greatest long distance runner ever?

Bekele can make a strong case on the track:

Bekele
Four Olympic medals (three gold)
Six World Championship medals (five gold)
Former 5000m and 10,000m world-record holder

Kipchoge
Two Olympic medals
Two World Championship medals (one gold)

But Kipchoge can make a strong case on the pavement:

Bekele
Second-fastest marathoner in history
Two World Marathon Major victories

Kipchoge
Four of the five best marathon times in history
Two-time Olympic marathon champion
12 World Marathon Major victories

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Yalemzerf Yehualaw, Amos Kipruto win London Marathon

Yalemzerf Yehualaw
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Ethiopian Yalemzerf Yehualaw became the youngest female runner to win the London Marathon, while Kenyan Amos Kipruto earned the biggest victory of his career in the men’s race.

Yehualaw, 23, clocked 2:17:26, prevailing by 41 seconds over 2021 London champ Joyciline Jepkosgei of Kenya.

Yehualaw tripped and fell over a speed bump around the 20-mile mark. She quickly rejoined the lead pack, then pulled away from Jepkosgei by running the 24th mile in a reported 4:43, which converts to 2:03:30 marathon pace; the women’s world record is 2:14:04.

Yehualaw and Jepkosgei were pre-race favorites after world record holder Brigid Kosgei of Kenya withdrew Monday with a right hamstring injury.

On April 24, Yehualaw ran the fastest women’s debut marathon in history, a 2:17:23 to win in Hamburg, Germany.

She has joined the elite tier of female marathoners, a group led by Kenyan Peres Jepchirchir, the reigning Olympic, New York City and Boston champion. Another Ethiopian staked a claim last week when Tigist Assefa won Berlin in 2:15:37, shattering Yehualaw’s national record.

Joan Benoit Samuelson, the first Olympic women’s marathon champion in 1984, finished Sunday’s race in 3:20:20 at age 65.

LONDON MARATHON: Results

Kipruto, 30, won the men’s race in 2:04:39. He broke free from the leading group in the 25th mile and crossed the finish line 33 seconds ahead of Ethiopian Leul Gebresilase, who said he had hamstring problems.

Kipruto, one of the pre-race favorites, had never won a major marathon but did finish second behind world record holder Eliud Kipchoge in Tokyo (2022) and Berlin (2018) and third at the world championships (2019) and Tokyo (2018).

Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele, the second-fastest marathoner in history, was fifth after being dropped in the 21st mile. His 2:05:53 was the fastest-ever marathon by a runner 40 years or older. Bekele ran his personal best at the 2019 Berlin Marathon — 2:01:41 — and has not run within four minutes of that time since.

The major marathon season continues next Sunday with the Chicago Marathon, headlined by a women’s field that includes Kenyan Ruth Chepngetich and American Emily Sisson.

London returns next year to its traditional April place after being pushed to October the last three years due to the pandemic.

MORE: Bekele looks ahead to Kipchoge chase after London Marathon

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