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Summary

  1. Nadal beats Dimitrov in five thrilling sets
  2. Spaniard wins 6-3 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (4-7) 6-4
  3. Nadal plays Federer in Sunday's final
  4. His first major final since 2014
  5. Match took four hours and 56 minutes

Live Reporting

By Mike Henson

All times stated are UK

Get involved

  1. Finals weekend incoming...

    Rafael Nadal

    Highlights of Rafael Nadal's win over Grigor Dimitrov will be on BBC Two at 17:00 GMT. 

    I imagine they will have to clear the schedule to about 21:00 GMT because it was all killer and zero filler.

    And what a finals weekend in waiting: 

    Tomorrow: Venus v Serena

    Sunday: Roger v Rafa

    Both are 08:30 GMT.

    See you there.

  2. Post update

    There is a lot going on in the split pic above. Follically alone.

  3. Which Williams sister will make history?

    Eight years on from their last Grand Slam meeting Venus and Serena will go head-to-head in the women's final on Saturday.

    But which one will win? Will it be Serena taking a 23rd Grand Slam title or Venus her first major crown since Wimbledon 2008?

    Video content

    Video caption: Australian Open 2017: Serena & Venus Williams ready for final
  4. Other events in the summer of 2008

    The showpiece matches at the Australian Open are a repeat of the Wimbledon finals weekend nine years ago. This is the week that was:

    • Donald Trump was five years into his stint hosting The Apprentice
    • The UK number one was Closer by Ne-Yo
    • Spain won the European Championship
    • Manchester United won their third consecutive Premier League title while Portsmouth, now in League Two, won the FA Cup
  5. The magic of Federer v Nadal

    Relieve some memorable points from Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal's famous 2008 Wimbledon final, regarded as one of the greatest tennis matches in history.

    Will this year's final match that epic?

    Video content

    Video caption: 8 magic moments from Nadal & Federer's epic Wimbledon final
  6. Roger v Rafa XXXV

    Rafa and Roger

    From their first meeting in the second round of the Miami Masters in 2004 - a straight sets win for Rafael Nadal - to their most recent - Federer's triumph in the final of his hometown tournament in Basle in 2015 - these two have played 34 matches.

    Nadal leads the head-to-head 23-11, with a winning record of 6-2 in Grand Slam finals.

  7. Get Involved

    #bcbtennis

    Veeresh: The best script ever for this year opening slam... Nadal vs Fed, Venus vs Serena.

    Andi: Completely overcome! Colleague thought I was hyperventilating at the end!

  8. Post update

  9. 'A privilege to face Federer'

    Nadal 6-3 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (4-7) 6-4 Dimitrov

    "I hope to recover well and for me it is a privilege. It is a special thing for both of us to be able to compete against each other in a major final. 

    Roger came to open my academy in Majorca, it was a big moment for my village and I thank him for that. We were supposed to play an exhibition match, but with our injuries we just had a hit with the kids.

    "I think we both thought that we wouldn't be back in major finals."  

    Rafael Nadal
  10. 'I never even dreamed of this'

    Nadal 6-3 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (4-7) 6-4 Dimitrov

    Rafael Nadal: "First of all, I am tired. Grigor was playing unbelievable. it was a great match. I am very happy to be part of it, the crowd was amazing. Many thanks for the huge support, the last two weeks have been unforgettable for me.

    "When you work hard and have tough moments like last year, I never dreamed to be back in the Australian Open after a lot of months without competing.

    Rafael Nadal
  11. Post update

    Russell Fuller

    BBC tennis correspondent on Radio 5 live sports extra

    For the first time since Wimbledon finals weekend in 2008 we will see Venus v Serena and Federer v Nadal in Grand Slam finals.

    It's amazing to see what's happened.

    The world's gone mad.

  12. Get Involved

    #bbctennis

    Joe Wedgwood: WOW. WHAT. A. MATCH. Bring on another Roger, Rafa epic!!

    Jarleth Eaton: Venus v Serena and Federer v Nadal in the #AusOpen Singles' Finals. Makes me feel as if I'm 10 years old again!

    Alice Stainer: Rafa's soul is platinum. After a torrid few years, my admiration for him is unbounded. There'll be no dry eyes whoever wins final.

  13. 'Nadal like the Terminator'

    Simon Briggs

    Daily Telegraph tennis correspondent on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra

    It's amazing for Nadal after everything he's been through. He was like a rock, he has a super-human place he goes to in these barnstorming contests. 

    He's like the Terminator, you can't see how he's going to be beaten.

    Rafael Nadal
  14. Nadal wins to reach final

    Nadal 6-3 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (4-7) 6-4 Dimitrov

    Grigor Dimitrov departs the scene to a standing ovation, a hint of a hobble to his gait as the lactic catches up with him and the adrenaline wears off.

    Rafa Nadal pumps a fist to his box and prepares for his post-match chat.

  15. Game, set and match Nadal

    Nadal 6-3 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (4-7) 6-4 Dimitrov

    The two men are locked together in a sweat-drenched embrace at the net, sharing silent words of consolation and congratulation.

    The clock stopped at four hours and 56 minutes on their epic.

    An absolute advert for tennis, and sport more generally.

    And it means Nadal v Federer on Sunday!

    Rafael Nadal
  16. Match point Nadal

    *Nadal 6-3 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (4-7) 5-4 Dimitrov

    Third time lucky?

  17. Deuce

    *Nadal 6-3 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (4-7) 5-4 Dimitrov

    My giddy aunts.

    I can't take much more of this.

    Dimitrov pounces on a thick net cord and crashes away a winner.

  18. Match point Nadal

    *Nadal 6-3 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (4-7) 5-4 Dimitrov

    Another ram-rod serve, another chance for Rafael Nadal.

  19. Deuce

    *Nadal 6-3 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (4-7) 5-4 Dimitrov

    Not yet you don't.

    Grigor Dimitrov stretches skywards and slam-dunks away a stretching smash.

    This might yet have more legs than we thought.

  20. Match point Nadal

    *Nadal 6-3 5-7 7-6 (7-5) 6-7 (4-7) 5-4 Dimitrov

    An ace on video review and Rafael Nadal can sniff the final...

    Rafael Nadal