Nadal and del Potro meet again in a Grand Slam showdown

11 September, 2018, 05:15 | Author: Alyssa Little
  • Rafael Nadal

"From my experience, and I can only talk about myself", Djokovic said, "this has been definitely the toughest U.S. Open in the last, you know, 10 years that I have played in in terms of conditions".

All that mattered, really, was that Djokovic managed to do what Roger Federer could not two nights earlier: beat 55th-ranked John Millman at the US Open. We've never faced each other in a Grand Slam final, so that's something new.

The third seed, who advanced after world number one Rafa Nadal retired from their match due to injury on Friday, said persistent wrist ailments almost led to him exiting the sport in 2015, what he called the "worst moment" of his career.

Having fought through his own injury-ravaged years, Del Potro understood his opponent's pain and gave him a warm embrace before he left the court.

Novak Djokovic hailed Juan Martin del Potro as a "gentle giant" but he'll have no hesitation in attempting to cut his close friend down to size in Sunday's US Open final.

While we're on a stat kick, Djokovic will look to win Wimbledon and the US Open in the same season for the third time.

However, no one can begrudge del Potro his second Grand Slam final.

Williams suffered life threatening complications after the birth on September 1 of past year, requiring four surgeries to deal with blood clots.

Both players missed the 2017 U.S. Open with injuries, but were on the cusp of returning to the finals.

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Woods finished sixth at the British Open, and has battled back from injuries and personal problems.

Four years ago, Kei Nishikori upset Novak Djokovic in four sets to reach his first grand slam final.

The second set saw him get two more break points in Nadal's first service game, after a delicious play where he scored the point of the match (see video.) But Nadal held serve and just as everyone was were getting set for another marathon, the top seed needed a medical timeout and the match was all but sealed then.

Nishikori has enough about him to make this a competitive affair and we should see plenty of long rallies, but if Djokovic plays to his best then there will only be one victor.

"When you win or when you lose like this", Nadal said, "you come back home with the feeling that you did all the things that you can do". Commenting on how he tries to stay injury-free, the Argentinian said: 'I spend a lot of hours doing treatments on my wrist, on all my body.

But del Potro also is a fan favourite, admired for his gracious demeanor and perseverance through his many wrist problems.

"I hate to retire, but to stay one more set out there playing like this was too much for me", ATP quoted Nadal, as saying. "I got depressed for couple of months also". Today at 2-all in the first I felt it again. He barely took any time between points while serving - and he's known as one of the slowest guys on tour. I know what I have.

"I am playing the right way and enjoying things".

Djokovic went into cruise control in the third set, winning four consecutive games from 2-2 to win the match and book his spot in the final.

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