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Federer breezes into final

Roger Federer breezed through to the final of the BNP Paribas Open with victory over Alexandr Dolgopolov.

The Ukrainian had beaten three higher-ranked players on his way to the last four, including Rafael Nadal in the third round, but struggled in windy conditions and lost 6-3 6-1 in just 61 minutes.

Initially Dolgopolov looked to be handling his first Masters semi-final well but from 3-3 he lost five straight games.

The 25-year-old's flashy, flat-hitting game was more susceptible to being blown off course and four forehand errors gave Federer the break for 5-3.

Federer has looked very solid all tournament, his shaky confidence from last year banished by an excellent start to the season and his movement no longer compromised by a sore back.

Dolgopolov dropped serve again at the start of the second, and the result was all but decided when Federer showed outstanding defensive skills to win a long game and lead 4-1.

The 2012 champion wrapped up victory moments later, his 11th in a row, and will face either Novak Djokovic or John Isner in the final.

Should he win that, Federer will return to the top four in the rankings for the first time since before Wimbledon last year.