Hewitt tops Nishikori in searing heat to reach Brisbane final

Saturday, January 04, 2014 /by

BRISBANE, Australia -- Former No. 1-ranked Lleyton Hewitt turned back the clock with a gritty 5-7, 6-4, 6-3 win over second-seeded Kei Nishikori on Saturday to advance to the Brisbane International final and a possible meeting with Roger Federer.

Hewitt, 32, handled the heat better than his opponent as the temperatures topped 104 degrees Fahrenheit, working Nishikori around the court to reach his first final on home soil since losing the 2005 Australian Open decider to Marat Safin.

Top-seeded Federer was playing eighth-seeded Jeremy Chardy in a later semifinal.

Defending champion Serena Williams was set to face second-ranked Victoria Azarenka for the women's title Saturday night.

Venus Williams earlier lost 6-2, 5-7, 6-4 to Ana Ivanovic in the final of the ASB Classic in Auckland, New Zealand.

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