Roger Federer saw off world No.1 Novak Djokovic to reach a record eighth Wimbledon final following an enthralling four-set semi-final at the All-England Club.
Looking to win a record-equalling seventh title in the 127th year of the championships, Federer took the first set in just 24 minutes, as Djokovic struggled under the centre court roof.
The defending champion drew level in the second set, but parity was merely temporary as Federer swatted away Djokovic crucially in the third set and then in the fourth to create history.
Federer can now return to world No.1 with victory in Sunday's final, where he can break Pete Sampras' record for weeks at the top of the rankings, as well as secure a seventh Wimbledon title against either Andy Murray or Jo-Wilfried Tsonga.
Federer was aiming to reach an eighth Wimbledon final, to contest for a record-equalling seventh title, while reigning champion Djokovic had it all to lose knowing his world No.1 ranking and stranglehold on three of tennis' four majors was in jeopardy.
The six-time champion, with a superior head-to-head record over the Serbian, had failed to win any of the last three meetings between the pair, the last victory coming in last year's French Open semi-final.
However the early going in the pair's first meeting on grass saw Federer stay with the hitting of Djokovic, and break in the sixth game, as the five-time grand slam winner struggled with his footing under the centre court roof.
The Swiss took the first set 6-3 in 24 minutes as he continued to move Djokovic around a slippery surface on centre.
It took little time for the Belgrade-born Djokovic to take back the initiative at the start of the second set, capitalising on a spate of Federer errors at the baseline, to break for a two-love lead.
Djokovic appeared steadier on his feet, and began winding up his fierce forehand; pushing back Federer from making inroads at the net.
He snatched the second set 6-3, with just 55 minutes on the clock in a contest which had rarely thrilled, but yet retained all the characteristics of a match ready to burst into life.
In the ebb and flow nature of the match, Federer was this time the main protagonist, creating break points in the second and sixth games.
On both occasions the Swiss player found the tramlines after tense and enthralling rally's, and after another long exchange, Federer was again denied, as he went long with a backhand from the baseline.
Djokovic had survived, and almost broke himself in the seventh game, but Federer's first serves returned to help him at 30-40.
And the Serb was to rue his missed opportunity, as Federer converted the second of two more break points with a barrage of sumptuous forehands into the corner, which he rounded off with the simplest of overhead volley's as he took the third set 6-4.
Centre court quickly resembled a pressure cooker as far as Djokovic was concerned, and Federer thrust himself a break ahead early in the fourth again, converting the second of three break points.
As his confidence began to erode away, Djokovic faced three more break points but a punishing backhand down the line came amid service game which retaining the world No.1's interest at SW19.
But come Federer's sixth service game, he showed his experience, serving out the match as he continued his unenviable record in Wimbledon semi finals, booking another final spot as he looks to match Sampras' seven titles on the halow grass.