Last four for Dubai Tennis Championships begins to take shape.
Andy Murray and Roger Federer through in straight sets
It has not been a happy hunting ground for the world No 4 in the past but he made a flying start and then survived a topsy-turvy second set to triumph 6-3, 7-5.
Murray, who is likely to face world No 1 Novak Djokovic in the last four, had played two qualifiers in the first two rounds but this was a real test, with the 24-year-old's only previous victory against Berdych coming back in 2005.
The Grand Slam record-holder from Switzerland beat the former world No 8 from Russia 6-3, 6-4 with his third successive display of calm confidence, elegant ground-stroking and great solidity on the bigger points.
It suggested that the extra competition Federer has had this year – having included Rotterdam and the Davis Cup in his schedule – has made him very match tight from the start of the week.
It was his 12th victory in 12 encounters against Youzhny, and one of his most comfortable, establishing a break in the fourth game of the first set, and the first game of the second, and consolidating the advantages right through.
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