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Roger Federer of Switzerland celebrates defeating Nick Kyrgios of Australia in the semi finals at Crandon Park Tennis Center on March 31, 2017 in Key Biscayne, Florida.

Nadal leads the head-to-head with Federer 23-13 before Sunday's final in Miami, which will be the 37 meeting between the players and a 22 final (Nadal leads 14-8).

"In 2005 I beat you very lucky in the finals here".

"Of course I'm thrilled for him as well that he came back as well as he did after the comeback, the struggles that he had previous year". 'Knowing that I won't play for a while, it's easy now to just compress all the energy you have and give it one last push, ' he said.

"Roger, congratulations on one of the best comebacks ever after an injury, so well done, I'm happy for you", Nadal said. We've had some epic matches over the years, which I didn't always enjoy, but mostly we had some great battles.

"The dream continues", Federer told the crowd in Miami after the match.

Federer, who will now jump to the fourth spot in ATP rankings, is all set to improve further as he has left rivals Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray behind in the race to year-ending top spot.

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The first set was a tight affair with both players having their opportunities to break.

Nadal was forced to save two break points at 3-3 in the second set but Federer eventually got the breakthrough at 4-4, to hand himself the chance to serve for the title which he took.

In the final game of the second set, after breaking his opponent's serve, the Swiss summed up his confidence with a superb backhand down the line.

The Spaniard has also never won the Miami Open in 12 previous appearances, including four trips to the final, and Federer can not quite figure out why.

Serving for the championship at 5-4, Federer hit his only double fault on the first point but quickly regrouped. Ultimately, I think I put in a good performance.

The last time he started the year winning these three tournaments was 2006. It was close. I think on the big points, I was just a little bit better.

Federer, 35, is off to a flying 19-1 start in 2017 after winning 11 consecutive matches as he now pauses to consider how much he will play in the pre-French Open clay season.