Juan Martin Del Potro: After nearly quitting, 'everything is almost perfect'

Rafael Nadal agrees with Serena Williams 'Now wins are more special'

Rafael Nadal agrees with Serena Williams 'Now wins are more special'

Nishikori - the first Japanese man to reach a US Open semifinal in the Open era - was a finalist in NY in 2014. So much of that time had felt wasted.

That Del Potro lives for the big stage and champion clashes is evident.

After Del Potro made it past an injured Rafael Nadal, who retired when trailing by two sets on Friday, Djokovic looked superb as he romped past Kei Nishikori to reach his eighth final at Flushing Meadows.

The Wimbledon champion, who ended a two-year grand slam drought by winning at the All England Club, has now won 13 sets in a row in NY.

"It means a lot to me". Del Potro, I argued, should be around a [2.32]-shot against any of them in a head-to-head.

"I didn't know if I will be a tennis player again or not".

"Now I'm having a good present, looking forward for the future".

"Everything", he added with a smile, "is nearly ideal".

Nadal's dominant 11-5 win record over the Argentine counted for nothing as his lack of fitness, after the marathon, a five-set thriller in extreme heat and humid conditions on Wednesday against Austria's Dominic Thiem, was apparent in the losses in the first two sets against del Potro.

Del Potro, a man far too familiar with his body letting him down, is probably the last person who would have wanted to progress in such a manner but surely no player deserves a kind break more. Andy Murray, sidelined with hip and back issues, missed four straight Grand Slams starting with last year's Open before his appearance here ended with a second round defeat.

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When he returned, he had to rebuild his backhand, first by relying exclusively on a slice, and only recently able to strike meaningful two-handed shots with confidence.

"One of the keys of the match will be return, how well can I return, how many returns I can get back in play, but also try to have some depth in that return, and how accurately I can serve myself". It was a familiar pain, one that he's dealt with off-and-on for years.

Now he stands one match away from winning the US Open for a third time.

NOVAK Djokovic, the two-time champion, will face 2009 victor Juan Martin del Potro for the US Open title on Sunday (Monday AEST).

"It absolutely gives me empathy". "I think it doesn't matter the final result in the tournament. That's makes me feels alive again".

Nadal said he "hated retiring" but was in "too much pain" to continue the defence of his US Open title.

"I am working hard every day and trying to reach certain heights that I visualise every time I accomplish something big".

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But, Djokovic has been through his own journey and a third US Open title would complete his return to the top echelons of the sport and serve as a warning that the Djokovic dynasty was never over, it was just on a brief hiatus. "I don't like to see him suffering on court today". He's a dear friend, someone that I respect a lot.

He said: "The worst moment was in 2015 when I was close to quitting this sport because I couldn't find a way to fix my wrist problems". We all knew that he had a capacity and a quality to get to the point where he is at the moment.

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