"It's always tough against him. Slams are when he plays his best tennis," Murray said in a courtside interview. "When I was serving for the match at 6-5 in the fourth, he came up with some unbelievable shots.
"I didn't play the best tiebreak, it's hard when you're serving for a place in the final and a few minutes later you are into a fifth set."
Murray produced a superb service game in the first set, broke in the third game and gave Federer only one break opportunity to take the first set 6-4 in 45 minutes.
Neither player was prepared to give any quarter in the second set as they thrusted and parried, punched balls down the tramlines, produced delicate drop shots and running cross-court passing shots from amazing angles to force a tiebreak.
Murray was the first to blink when he allowed Federer to a 4-1 lead and while he battled back to 5-5, Federer seized the opportunity from a mistimed overhead from Murray to level.
Image: Britain's Andy Murray, right, is congratulated by Switzerland's Roger Federer after Murray won their semifinal match at the Australian Open tennis championship in Melbourne, Australia, Friday, Jan. 25, 2013.