Del Potro scraps past Simon to set up Nadal clash

Rafael Nadal Wimbledon

Nadal resisted the big heart and forehand of Del Potro in a classic to set up what could be another match to savour in the semi-finals against Novak Djokovic.

There are zero major titles so far for either Isner, 33, or Anderson, 32, who shockingly ended Federer's bid for a ninth championship at Wimbledon by erasing a match point and beating him 13-11 in the fifth set of their quarterfinal Wednesday.

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.

Now Nadal will face longtime rival Novak Djokovic in the semifinals Friday. He's playing well. The only way to try to win it is to play very well.

Anderson comes to the final Friday with the biggest possible boost after coming from two sets and match-point down to beat the eight-times champion, Roger Federer, in a heart-stopping match on No 1 Court, the Swiss's first visit there since 2015.

"This is going to be an emotional match for both of us", said Nadal.

Being kept on court for so long before a 52nd meeting with Djokovic is not exactly the kind of preparation the 17-times Grand Slam champion would have wanted.

"I think after each win throughout these 10 days, I've had a Kit Kat".

It was such a tense affair, particularly the 71-minute deciding set, that when it was all over, Del Potro lay on the ground, face down, and only got up when he saw Nadal standing over him.

Del Potro trailed 1-3 but at 5-5 he fired down an ace to reach match point number five and this time Simon cracked, netting a backhand to the relief of the Argentine who roared his approval, happy to conserve energy before taking on Nadal.

"Then I think all the things that happened in that final was much more dramatic than this one".

"I was playing tennis".

"But is impossible to win always, even for him (Federer)".

And while Nadal is back on top of the world after snaring an 11th French Open title last month, Djokovic believes he too is approaching his vintage best again after a turbulent two years in which he relinquished all four grand slam trophies that he once held simultaneously.

'In the same time, I'm trying to use the experience and memories that I had on being in final stages of Grand Slams, just take things very simple, day by day.

It was a breathless Wimbledon contest that kept on giving for nearly five hours - diving volleys, ferocious forehands, blazing backhands and even acrobatic tumbles - and at the end of it all Rafael Nadal was the one left standing on Wednesday. The victor will get a chance to play at the biggest stage in tennis. I feel like a lot of aspects of my game can give him a lot of trouble'.

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