There was some controversy in that leveling game when Murray thought he had game point on a shot to the base line, but it was overruled by a linesman. He eventually held to level the set at 4-4, then 5-5, before the late exchange of service breaks that sent the set to another tiebreaker won by Federer, sending the match into a fifth set.
Earlier yesterday, top seeds Sara Errani and Roberta Vinci of Italy won the first title of the year at Melbourne Park, beating unseeded Australian pair Ashleigh Barty and Casey Dellacqua 6-2, 3-6, 6-2 in the women’s doubles final.
The 16-year-old Barty was attempting to become the youngest Grand Slam champion since Martina Hingis won the Australian Open women’s singles title in 1997.
Today, defending champion Victoria Azarenka plays sixth seed Li Na of China for the women’s singles title.
Li lost the Australian Open final to Kim Clijsters in 2011 two months before winning her first and only Grand Slam at the French Open.
“Last time was more exciting, [more] nervous because it was my first time to be in a final, but I think this time [I’m] more calmed down, more cool,” Li said yesterday.
Azarenka leads 5-4 in career matches, including the last four times they have played.