Del Potro scraps past Simon to set up Nadal clash

Del Potro scraps past Simon to set up Nadal clash

Del Potro scraps past Simon to set up Nadal clash

World number one Nadal, the 2008 and 2010 champion at the All England Club, trails Djokovic, the 2011, 2014 and 2015 victor, 26-25 in a rivalry which began at Roland Garros 12 years ago.

The five-set match between Kevin Anderson and John Isner has become the longest semifinal in Wimbledon history.

Which TV channels will broadcast the Wimbledon 2018 Novak Djokovic vs Rafael Nadal semi-final match? It is timed for release as the anticipation crests with Roger as returning champion, 10 years after their famed 2008 Wimbledon championship - an epic match so close and so reflective of their competitive balance that, in the end, the true victor was the sport itself. "That's a big thing", said second seed Nadal.

While Nadal's rivalry with Roger Federer may be considered as the most engaging, it is the Spaniard's rivalry with Djokovic which is the most enduring. The final score line read 7-5, 6-7, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 in favor of the 17-time Grand Slam champion. 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.

Nadal mentioned he wasn't aware of Federer's struggles against Kevin Anderson at the time, but said unfortunately that's the reality of the sport. "If I want to beat him, I have to come to the net very often and play hard with my forehands, with my backhands".

In arguably the grandest, and statistically the most frequent, showdown of the Open era, the momentum has swung this way then that. I knew I was in a good spot.

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But my goal is to try to play very well.

The Majorcan, who is the world number one but seeded second at Wimbledon, looked refreshed as he breezed through his opening four matches without dropping a set.

After smoothly slicing through his first four matches the five-set struggle over four hours and 47 minutes, the longest of the tournament, was probably Nadal's flawless preparation for Djokovic, who will test his stamina and movement in entirely different ways, with swift changes of direction rather than raw power and, if it is singing, his serve. Quite how much of this was spent by Nadal re-arranging bottles, or procrastinating in advance of points is up for debate, but in all seriousness, this does demonstrate the test on players bodies.

Great match, an emotional match for both of us and for the fans, too.

The two now-legendary players first met 12 years ago at the French Open but that quarter-final was something of an anticlimax thanks to a back injury that forced Djokovic to retire when already trailing by two sets to love.

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