Djokovic downs Nadal in epic to reach Wimbledon final

Rafael Nadal vs Novak Djokovic Wimbledon

Rafael Nadal vs Novak Djokovic Wimbledon

The 31-year-old Djokovic somehow managed to get past Nadal 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (9), 3-6, 10-8 in a match lasting over five hours and 15 minutes.

Nadal and Djokovic will have to resume their match on Saturday before the victor will play Anderson in the final on Sunday, meaning one of Djokovic or Nadal will not be well-rested heading into the final. Djokovic and Nadal will have to play out their match, which could go two more sets, then one of them will play in the final on Sunday against Anderson.

The match will finish on Saturday.

"I don't really know what to say right now", said Anderson. For us to be out there for that length of time. But after each man had won 24 games in the first set, Anderson finally broke through and took the match, employing one of the most impressive shots of the tournament thus far to do it.

It led to the unusual situation of both players leaving the court to a huge ovation - and applauding the fans in return - but without there being a clear victor or loser.

"Because it's been a long 15 months for me, you know, trying to overcome different obstacles".

Remarkably, the only Wimbledon semi-final that has ever been longer in the tournament's history was the first this year, between John Isner and Kevin Anderson.

The 33-year-old agreed with Anderson that Wimbledon, the Australian Open and Roland Garros should fall in line with the US Open and introduce a tiebreak in the final set.

"I agree with Kevin". He's playing I think his second Grand Slam finals.

"I think we're quite even".

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In the 50th game, Isner took down the opening point before Anderson captured the next four - including two on aces.

That service hold - helped by a 129 miles per hour (207.6km/h) second serve - took the American to 100 service games unbroken at this Wimbledon. "I can feel the crowd (get) pretty antsy for us to get off the court". My left heel is killing me.

"I have to recover as much as I can for the final now". "The match is long, so you have time to bounce back, I guess, to regroup", he said.

"That's no consolation to me. I'm overwhelmed", he said after the match.

"It feels like it´s a draw but somebody has to win". It may level the playing field slightly, as Anderson had to slog through a six-hour match against Isner, will at least have Saturday off. I have an very bad blister on my right foot.

He stands at 0-5 with Nadal and 1-5 against Djokovic.

But it was Djokovic who tended to be better down the stretch in his 52nd career meeting against Nadal in a contest that seemed as if it should be worth a trophy.

Nadal, the 2008 and 2010 champion, trails Djokovic, the 2011, 2014 and 2015 victor, 26-25 in a rivalry which began at Roland Garros 12 years ago.

The Serb dominated the men's game earlier this decade, holding the number one ranking for 223 weeks and completing a career Grand Slam when he claimed the title at Roland Garros two years ago.

Victory in the semi-final would put him in a sixth Wimbledon final and 25th at the majors.

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