Djokovic eases past Nishikori to reach US Open final

Nadal Del Potro Cilic US Open

Nadal Del Potro Cilic US Open

Nadal had had his right knee taped during his gruelling third-round clash against Karen Khachanov but insisted afterwards it was not a big issue and he appeared in good shape for his next two matches.

Nadal's stamina and famous fitness have been put to the test on the sweltering Flushing Meadows hardcourts as he has logged almost 16 hours through five matches.

Del Potro, who lost to Nadal in last year's semi-finals, said he was now focused on extending his career, sticking to a daily yoga regime and spending hours on treatments for his wrist and body.

"It's not a tennis match when one is playing and the other is at the side of the court".

Nadal, the world's No. 1 player and the defending champion in NY, retired against Juan Martin del Potro, trailing 7-6 (7-3), 6-2 about two hours into the first semifinal of the day in Flushing Meadows. "I said to my box immediately that I felt something on the knee". Djokovic also has won nine straight major semifinals and will play his 23rd final on Sunday - the third most in men's tennis history behind Roger Federer (30) and Rafael Nadal (24). After losing the first three matches of his comeback this year, he has gone on to reach the quarter-finals at Roland Garros, lose to Nadal in the semi-finals in Rome and in the Queen's final to Cilic, before beating Kevin Anderson in the Wimbledon final.

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"It was hard for me to keep playing".

Under slate-grey skies on a cooler day in NY, the intensity level was predictably high early on as the competitors traded breaks in the opening two games. Yes, it is bitterly disappointing but he has added another Grand Slam title in 2018 and he is world number one. "I think the key of the match was the first set".

Rafael Nadal got medical attention in the second set before retiring at the end of second vs Juan Martin Del Potro.

Del Potro will now face Djokovic, the 2011 and 2015 victor, who reached his eighth final at the tournament and 23rd of his Grand Slam career with a 6-3, 6-4, 6-2 stroll past Japan's Kei Nishikori.

The Serb held comfortably and crafted five break points in the second game of the match, converting the fifth.

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Nadal, who had never before retired from a U.S. Open match, showed signs of distress nearly from the start as he limped noticeably after a grueling 69-minute opening set. I am having a lot of success.

He has resurrected his career impressively after minor surgery on his long-term elbow injury, which kept him out of the game for six months a year ago. "I love to play against Rafa because he's the biggest fighter in this sport".

He needed his right knee strapped after the seventh game before gallantly fighting off two set points in the 10th game, breaking Del Potro who was serving for the set. "You could imagine very hard for me to say goodbye before the match finish but at some point you have to take a decision".

Del Potro took the opening set after a brutal opening set went all the way to a breaker at Flushing Meadows, the Argentine taking it 7-3 with a series of stunning groundstrokes. "I had my biggest memories on the tennis court playing on this court ... but I was a kid".

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