Djokovic beats darkness to reach quarter-finals

Ross Houston
July 14, 2018

Djokovic rallied to hold and only lost two more games from that point onward as he advanced to his first Grand Slam semi-final since the 2016 US Open.

That dented the Japanese confidence and Djokovic grabbed the double break to seal set three but the inexorable march to victory that many had predicted did not materialize.

World number one Rafa Nadal produced a performance of resilience and resolve as he edged past Argentine Juan Martin del Potro 7-5 6-7 (7) 4-6 6-4 6-4 in four hours and 48 minutes.

This is a 32nd Grand Slam semi-final appearance for Djokovic, although there was some doubt he would reach that mark.

Djokovic will face old rival and world No. 1 Nadal, who saw off Del Potro 7-5, 6-7 (7-9), 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 after 4 hours and 48 minutes on Centre Court to reach his sixth Wimbledon semifinal and 28th at the majors. "I need to find that something". However, Federer was unable to break his own record after dropping the third set as Anderson embarked on a courageous fightback.

However, should he make Sunday's final and win it, he probably won't care that he isn't exactly a fan favourite. I don't want to stop here. That's the worst feeling you can have as a tennis player.

"After surgery I didn't think it was going to take me so much time to really get on the desired level".

Khachanov overcame more misfortune as he held to level the third set at 2-2 despite Djokovic twice receiving the help of a net cord, but he could not survive more pressure two games later, scooping a backhand long to put his opponent on the brink. "I'm enjoying my Wimbledon journey", he said after the win. Nishikori, who did the same thing in the fourth set, didn't receive one.

"I'm in a position to hopefully be here on Sunday. In the midst of emotions in a tough match, it happens".

The 20-time Grand Slam victor lost the set 6-4 as Anderson's relentless, powerful serve sent the match into a fifth and deciding set.

"He was pumping himself up".

But Djokovic appears to be building toward somewhere near his best again and, while made to work hard by Nishikori, he was good value for a 6-3, 3-6, 6-2, 6-2 triumph. I'm sure he's in good shape again.

"You think I ruined the court for just throwing my racket (down)?"

Novak Djokovic reached the Wimbledon quarter-finals for the 10th time on Monday with a 6-4, 6-2, 6-2 win over Russia's Karen Khachanov.

This was only the third time in Federer's 20 years of contesting Grand Slam matches that he lost after taking the opening two sets; both of the other defeats came in 2011.

"It feels great to be in the last four".

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