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Roger Federer to face Novak Djokovic in Indian Wells final

updated 7:33 PM EDT, Sat March 15, 2014
Swiss tennis star Roger Federer celebrates his semifinal victory over Ukraine's Aleksandr Dolgopolov at Indian Wells.
Swiss tennis star Roger Federer celebrates his semifinal victory over Ukraine's Aleksandr Dolgopolov at Indian Wells.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Former world No. 1 Roger Federer reaches final of Indian Wells Masters tournament
  • Swiss star has won the U.S. outdoor hardcourt event on four occasions
  • He will next play world No. 2 Novak Djokovic, who has won it twice
  • Serbian defeats American John Isner, beaten by Federer in the 2012 final

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(CNN) -- Roger Federer's revival is gathering pace.

The 17-time grand slam champion will seek his fifth title at the Indian Wells Masters event on Sunday, having breezed past 28th seed Alexandr Dolgopolov 6-3 6-1 in a semifinal lasting just over an hour.

"It was one of my best serving days ever," Federer told reporters. "When you are serving like that, everything seems easier. I was just going for it out there."

The Swiss veteran, who won his fourth title in the California desert tournament in 2012, will return to the top five in the rankings next week -- up three places.

He will next face a tougher test of his abilities against world No. 2 Novak Djokovic, who he beat last month on the way to winning the Dubai title, also on an outdoor hardcourt surface.

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Federer, who has yet to drop a set this week, is seeking the 79th title of his illustrious career, and victory over Djokovic will put him fourth in the rankings.

Dolgopolov had been trying to become the first player ranked outside the top 30 to beat both Federer and defending champion Rafael Nadal in the same tournament.

"I was ready physically, mentally," said the Ukrainian. "I wasn't nervous much, but I wasn't sharp enough.

"My concentration was going away for maybe one, two points every game, and you can't afford to have that in these matches."

Djokovic, who won the tournament in 2008 and 2011, had to work a bit harder than Federer to beat 2012 finalist John Isner on Saturday.

The Serbian avenged his defeat by the big-serving American at the same stage two years ago as he triumphed 7-5 6-7 (2-7) 6-1 in a match lasting two hours 23 minutes.

He trails Federer 15-17 in their career meetings, but defeated him three years ago on the way to winning the title in the Coachella Valley.

Read: Top seed Li shrugs off semifinal shock

Read: Nadal, Sharapova beaten at Indian Wells

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