Indian Wells, CA (SportsNetwork.com) - Four-time champion Roger Federer was an easy quarterfinal winner, while Canadian Milos Raonic won a thriller over Rafael Nadal Friday at the $5.3 million BNP Paribas Open.
Federer, the second-seeded former world No. 1 great, handled ninth-seeded Czech Tomas Berdych 6-4, 6-0 in 68 minutes at Indian Wells Tennis Garden. Later in the day, Raonic, seeded sixth, saved three match points in the second set to top the third-seeded Nadal, 4-6, 7-6 (12-10), 7-5 in a near three-hour encounter.
Federer broke Berdych four times, while the big Czech was unable to break the Swiss legend and committed five double faults.
Federer is now 13-6 lifetime versus the former Wimbledon runner-up Berdych, who had won five of their previous nine meetings.
"To get a match like this against a top guy gives you confidence," Federer said.
The 33-year-old Federer titled here from 2004-06 and again in 2012 and was last year's runner-up to Novak Djokovic.
The 17-time Grand Slam champ Federer's semifinal opponent on Saturday will be Raonic. Federer owns an 8-1 lifetime mark against the Canadian.
The French Open king Nadal, a three-time Indian Wells champ and the 2011 runner-up to Djokovic in the California desert, had been 5-0 all-time against Raonic. This was the first time Nadal lost in the quarterfinal round (8-1) at Indian Wells.
Raonic was helped by firing 19 aces.
Saturday's other semifinal will pit the current world No. 1 Djokovic against fourth-seeded Andy Murray in a rematch of January's Australian Open final, which was won by the Serbian stalwart.
Djokovic is a dominant 16-8 lifetime versus Murray, including a victory over the Scot in a semi here at Indian Wells in 2007.
The reigning Aussie Open and Wimbledon champ Djokovic won this event for a third time last year when he topped Federer in a marquee finale. The Serb was also a runner-up in 2007 against Nadal.
Murray was the 2009 Indian Wells runner-up to Nadal.
The winner of the first ATP Masters event of the season will claim $900,400.