Wimbledon 2018 semifinals: Rafa Nadal-Novak Djokovic, John Isner-Kevin Anderson
13 July, 2018, 09:43 | Author: Candice Daniels
In a match that delivered quality throughout, Nadal recovered from two sets to one down to treat the Wimbledon crowd to a match few will forget.
Nadal, the 2008 and 2010 champion, will now face three-time victor Djokovic for the 52nd time with the Serb holding a 26-25 edge.
Along the way, they have fought out a series of classic and epic battles including Djokovic's 5â7, 6â4, 6â2, 6â7 (5/7), 7â5 Australian Open final victory in 2012.
"After nearly five hours, I fell down". While Djokovic holds the edge overall at 26-25, Nadal is 9-4 in Grand Slams against a player at one time considered his nemesis. "He is one of the more complex players that I've ever seen in our sport".
The Spaniard, past the fourth round at the All England Club for the first time since that 2011 final, knows exactly what he has to do.
Djokovic, a 12-time major champ whose resume includes three trophies at the All England Club, advanced earlier Wednesday with a four-set victory over Kei Nishikori that didn't require almost as much energy or effort as what followed on Centre Court.
"Anything could have happened, so this is a big achievement for me to get to the semi-finals at Wimbledon". It is always a big test.
His confidence buoyed, Isner overwhelmed Milos Raonic on Wednesday to reach his maiden grand-slam semi-final.
While Nadal and Djokovic are old hands at winning Slams, the man stood on the opposite side of the net in Sunday's final will be bidding to win a first major.
The South African is through to the last eight for the first time, and he said: 'Playing somebody like Roger Federer is going to be a great experience.
He lost to Nadal in last year's US Open.
Isner has never previously past the third round and is mainly known for having played the longest match at SW19 - 11 hours and 5 minutes in beating Nicolas Mahut 70-68 in the fifth set over three days in 2010 and there is a plaque in his honour on Court 18.
Their clash, however, may not be easy on the eye.
An Anderson win looked anything but likely after Federer, once again looking imperious, extended his record streak of sets won at Wimbledon to an equal-career-best 34 straight to charge to a two-sets-to-love lead in little more than an hour. Yet the latter is in the better form overall and remains formidable once he gets to the business end of a tournament.
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Federer didn't seemed bothered by being away from Centre Court when he cruised through the first set in just 26 minutes. The eight-time champion and 20-time grand slam victor last played a Wimbledon match outside Centre Court in 2015.
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