Murray, Federer aim to preserve old order
ANDY Murray and Roger Federer will look to reach the Wimbledon final and preserve the iron grip of the sport's "Big Four", which has endured since 2003.
After Lleyton Hewitt triumphed 14 years ago, the following 13 men's titles have been shared between Federer, Murray, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal.
The four heavyweights have also filled eight of the last 10 runner-up spots.
Standing in the way of 2013 champion Murray and seven-time winner Federer getting to Sunday's final are Tomas Berdych, the 2010 runner-up, and sixth seed Milos Raonic.
Berdych trails Murray by 8-6 in career meetings while Federer has a 9-2 lead on Raonic, the youngest of the four semi-finalists at 24.
Second seed Murray needed a tough five-setter to get past Jo-Wilfried Tsonga and reach his seventh Wimbledon semi-final and 20th at all the majors.
With defending champion Djokovic, who beat him in Melbourne and Paris, a shock third-round loser at Wimbledon, Murray is the favourite to bag a third major on Sunday.
Federer, bidding for a record eighth Wimbledon title and 18th Grand Slam trophy, almost came unstuck in the quarter-finals.
He saved three match points and came back from two sets down to defeat 2014 US Open champion Marin Cilic to stay on course for a first major since lifting a seventh Wimbledon four years ago.
The third-seeded Swiss is, at 34, the oldest man in the semi-finals since 39-year-old Ken Rosewall finished runner-up to Jimmy Connors in 1974.
Federer is into his 11th Wimbledon semi-final and, on Wednesday, secured a record-setting 307th match win at the Slams.
He admits that his progress to the semi-finals has surprised him after a back injury forced him to skip the French Open.
It was the first Grand Slam he had missed since 1999 and came in a year where he has yet to win a trophy.