Published: Tue, September 11, 2018
Sport | By Floyd Cook

Djokovic blows Air K out of U.S. Open

Djokovic blows Air K out of U.S. Open

His third-round loss to Sam Querrey at Wimbledon in 2016 was his worst result at a major in nine years, and began a run of seven grand slam tournaments in a row, he missed last year's US Open through injury, that ran through to July this year.

On that day it was his right knee, the same one that needed attending to on Friday night and in the semi-final against Del Potro.

Del Potro, whose own injury troubles have been well-documented, will therefore get a chance to repeat his 2009 triumph in NY.

All four semifinalists were past finalists at Flushing Meadows, the first time that's happened at the U.S. Open since 2011.

But del Potro was on fumes by then after winning his own memorable five-setter against Thiem in the fourth round and beating Roger Federer in the quarter-finals.

Humanitarian notions that five-setters are reducing the best players to physical wrecks is somewhat diluted by the presence in Sunday's US Open final of Novak Djokovic and Juan Martín del Potro, who have experienced more than their share of physical and spiritual hurt in long, garlanded careers.

He hasn't yet played an opponent with a forehand or a serve as big as del Potro's, and the crowd will likely be against him.

One of the greatest players of all time, the one chink in the Spaniard's armour has always been his knees with injuries plaguing him throughout his career.

Nishikori, seeking to follow compatriot Naomi Osaka into a singles final at the U.S. Open, faced immediate pressure and saved four break points in the second game of the match before Djokovic converted a fifth.

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But, yeah, I think was 2-All in the first, 15-Love, something like this in the first set, that I felt.

"I am sad for him but I'm also happy to do my best".

Mike Bryan broke a tie for most major doubles titles with John Newcombe, and at 40 years, 4 months became the oldest Grand Slam doubles champion in the professional era. "You could imagine very hard for me to say goodbye before the match finish". "He's a dear friend, someone that I respect a lot".

"I had some issues during the tournament", he said, per The Metro. "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".

"He's a gentle giant", the 31-year-old Serb said of the 6ft 6in (1.98m) Del Potro affectionately dubbed the "Tower of Tandil" after his home town.

Having also had to wear tape on his knee, in his third round match against Karen Khachanov, and trailing by two sets here, Rafa was in too much pain to continue and had no choice but to surrender his crown prematurely. "I know what is going on with the knee". Should he win on Sunday, he will equal Sampras' record of 14 Grand Slam titles.

"I think I was just exhausted from last couple matches".

Unfortunately for Nishikori, Djokovic has been the victor in all 13 meetings since that match and has generally dominated this rivalry, so the Japanese player knows he is up against it here.

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