Wimbledon: Rafael Nadal tops del Potro to set up semifinal date with Novak Djokovic

World number one, Rafael Nadal battled past a fierce Juan Martin del Potro to reach the semifinals, where he will face three-time winner, Novak Djokovic, who defeated Kei Nishikori.Ā 

Nadal claimed a tight opening set, but stepped off the gas as del Potro fully came out of the blocks firing to secure the next two sets in clinical fashion. Nadal, however, got back in and broke midway through the fourth set to send the match into a fifth set. The Spaniard then held his nerves to finish the job and claim a 7-5, 6-7, 4-6, 6-4, 6-4 victory in nearly 5 hours of gripping tennis.

“It was a very emotional match,” Nadal said. “To be back in the semifinal here at Wimbledon, it’s an amazing feeling.”

Nadal, who’s bidding for a third Wimbledon crown, will next face Novak Djokovic, who outlasted Kei Nishikori of Japan in a four-set battle. The Serbian claimed aĀ 6-3, 3-6, 6-2, 6-2 victory to extend his winning streak over the Japanese to 14.

Djokovic celebrates his victory over Kei Nishikori

Having reached the semis of 22 of the 24 majors between 2011 and 2016, Djokovic is now closing in onĀ a first finalĀ appearance at a Grand Slam since losing toĀ Stan Wawrinka at the U.S. Open two years ago.

Elswhere, John Isner reached his first Grand Slam semi-final on his 41st appearance. The big-serving American beat Milos Raonic of Canada 6-7(5), 7-6(7), 6-4, 6-3 to set up a meeting with Federerā€™s conqueror Kevin Anderson in the last four.

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