Novak Djokovic cruises to his eighth US Open men's final

Ross Houston
September 10, 2018

Enough, really, of tennis.

NEW YORK - When Rafael Nadal finally finished a almost five-hour climb into the U.S. Open semifinals, he thought backward as much as ahead. So much of that time had felt wasted.

Perhaps it's because del Potro was sandbagging.

A tired and wounded world number one, Rafael Nadal, retired from his US Open semi-final while trailing Juan Martin del Potro 7-6 (7-3) 6-2, sending the Argentine back to the Flushing Meadows final for the first time since his 2009 triumph.

Devastated Rafael Nadal vowed the knee injury that forced him out of the US Open semi-finals on Friday won't stop him chasing more Grand Slam glory.

"I was close to quit this sport because I couldn't find a way to fix my wrist problems". "He's a dear friend, someone that I respect a lot. I got depressed for couple of months also", Del Potro told reporters.

"I didn't expect to get this kind of emotions playing tennis again". I am having success at the age of 32.

The problem with tennis dynasties is we are often not aware they are happening, or are even over, until many years in the future when hindsight becomes a popular tool. "Everything is nearly flawless".

"Today I couldn't play like myself", Nishikori said.

"He (Del Potro) is a great player everywhere".

Alec Baldwin of "Saturday Night Live" and "30 Rock" was seen cheering during the men's semifinals, along with other celebrities such as actor Chevy Chase (with his original "Caddyshack" hat) and four-time Grand Slam victor Manolo Santana.

When he returned, he had to rebuild his backhand, first by relying exclusively on a slice, and only recently able to strike meaningful two-handed shots with confidence.

In 2010 he said an early goodbye in Australia at the hands of Andy Murray because of his right knee, while tendinitis again kept him from the London 2012 Olympic Games and he did not return until 2013.

Djokovic can relate to the climb back from a body breakdown. It was a familiar pain, one that he's dealt with off-and-on for years. It's a match in which we know each other very well.

Novak DjokovicYou could cut the calmness on Djokovic's face with a knife as he took a fall on court, having sent the last British player out of Wimbledon, after fighting back from a set down to defeat Kyle Edmund.

"It absolutely gives me empathy".

"All my career everybody said that because of my style, I will have a short career", he noted.

Djokovic is in his 11th US Open semi-final and enjoys a 14-2 head-to-head record against Nishikori.

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.

But del Potro might have an ace up his sleeve - a group of 14 mates who have come to NY from his home town of Tandil, Argentina.

"I personally like him very much, not just as a player but as a person". I have missed a lot of opportunities. "This year has been a fantastic year until this moment", he insisted. "But because he plays so fast he makes me more alert from the first point because I know I have to be at my best in order to compete with him from the baseline". "It was just a matter of time", Djokovic said Friday.

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