Another Melbourne date with Djokovic awaits for Murray

He’s barely put a foot wrong in Melbourne so far, but Andy Murray has one more hurdle to overcome before he faces Novak Djokovic in the Australian Open final.

The two-time Grand Slam winner is up against Milos Raonic in the men’s second semi-final, and the Canadian has troubled Murray in the past.

Raonic and Murray are 4-4 in their head-to-head record, but crucially Muzza has come out on top in both of the last two contests – each time in straight sets.

Brit Murray is 1/3 favourite for the match, with 25-year-old Raonic 12/5 to reach a first career Grand Slam final.

The Canadian has endured some bruising encounters to get this far however, needing five sets to see off Stan Wawrinka and four to oust Gael Monfils in the last eight.

Last year’s Madrid Masters was the venue for the pair’s most recent meeting, where Murray triumphed 6-4 7-5.

The duo have met just once before in a Slam, and Murray prevailed that day too with a 6-4 6-4 6-2 success at the 2012 US Open.

Raonic was just 21 back then however, and he should be a much tougher opponent this time around.

A Murray victory in straight sets is the slight favourite with Ladbrokes at 13/8, but better value could be had in the 12/5 on a 3-1 win for the 2013 Wimbledon champion.

Should this contest go the full distance, Murray is 11/2 for a 3-2 win, while Raonic is 15/2.

And what of an off-day for Murray? Raonic can be backed at 10/1 for a straight sets success, with a 3-1 win available at 13/2.

Given Murray’s form thus far Down Under however, a Raonic landslide seems unlikely. Despite knowing throughout the tournament that birth of his first child is imminent, Murray has looked slick and clinical from Day One.

A four-time Australian Open runner-up, it would be a strong sign of potential for the year ahead should Murray reach the Melbourne final for a fifth time.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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