Andy Murray will look to revive the spirit of the summer of 2012 as he bids to make the Wimbledon final for the third time.
Murray set up a semi-final clash with Roger Federer taking just over two hours to beat unseeded Canadian Vasek Pospisil 6-4, 7-5, 6-4 – his sixth last four appearance in seven years.
Murray and Federer clashed twice on grass two years ago with vastly contrasting results. Federer left the Scot in tears after claiming the last of his seven All England Club titles, and his last Grand Slam title, in Murray’s debut final.
But a few weeks later – while all that glittered was gold in Great Britain – Murray produced a stunning 6–2, 6–1, 6–4 demolition job over the Swiss to take the Olympic title back on Centre Court.
It proved the turning point of his career, with the US Open title quickly following before he claimed Wimbledon the following summer and ending a 77-year wait for a home men’s winner.
All of which leaves the stage perfectly set for a Friday semi-final showdown, with either Novak Djokovic or Richard Gasquet the opponent in the final.
“I think in individual sports, previous matches and stuff kind of go out the window,” said Murray. “It’s all about who performs on that day.
“Obviously you can learn things from those matches, maybe some tactical things that worked well and reasons for why you got the correct outcome or the outcome that you wanted.
“I could try and do the same thing as I did at the Olympics but then Roger could play a completely different game style.
“I feel like I’m playing better tennis than I was then but I don’t think those matches that we played here in the past will have too much bearing on the outcome.”
Defeat at the Olympics hit Federer hard, with the men’s singles gold the only title missing his his extensive collection.
“It brings back those memories of a great summer for both of us – at Wimbledon for me and the Olympics for Andy,” he said, following a 6-3, 7-5, 6-2 quarter-final win over Gilles Simon.
“I never really had a chance at the Olympics. I don’t remember even if I had breakpoints or chances, honestly, it all went by so quickly, he was just better and that was it.”
However, Murray’s last meeting with Federer couldn’t have been more one-sided – he was the wrong side of a 6-0, 6-1 scoreline at the ATP Tour Finals in London.
“I was actually quite calm after that match,” he added.
“A lot of people in my team, people around me, were very, very worried by that match but I felt quite calm about it. It was obviously embarrassing.”
Murray insisted there were no problems from the shoulder injury that caused concern during his earlier win over Andreas Seppi. One of Federer’s great characteristics is how much of his career has been injury-free and Murray doesn’t see the 33-year old quitting any time soon.
“I have no idea how long he can keep competing at the top level,” he added, after giving watching fans – including the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and David Beckham – no real reasons to worry with an one quarter-final win.
“It could be three, four years at the rate he’s going just now. One of the reasons why he’s still at the top is he has a pretty efficient game style.
“It’s very impressive that he’s managed to stay at the top of the game for so long, considering how long he’s been at the top of the game for and how many matches he’s played. It’s significantly more than a lot of the guys that have been at the top of the game for a long time. He’s won over a thousand matches and played over 1,200 matches. That’s a lot of tennis.”