Kolkata: World no.1 Rafael Nadal went past Argentine Juan Del Martin Del Potro
4-6, 6-0, 6-3, 6-2 in the semi-final of the men’s singles event held at the Flushing Meadows on Friday.
The Spanish great, would have a 16th Grand Slam on his mind as he faces South Africa’s Kevin Anderson in the final of the US Open on Sunday.
The French Open champion, produced a remarkable display and powered through to the finals of the US Open.
This win would undoubtedly be of huge significance to the 31-year old, given the fact that he has had to suffer a lot of injuries in the past few years.
“For me what is more important, more than win slams is be happy. I am happy if I am healthy and happy, if I feel competitive in the most of the weeks that I am playing, and that’s what happened this year,” said the two-time US Open winner.
He added further, “So I am very happy about what happened, very happy to win Monte-Carlo, Barcelona, Madrid and Roland Garros. I am very happy to be in the final here in the US Open.”
Nadal, who would be contesting his third major final of the year said that he would put up a fight anyhow to try and win his third US Open title.
”Of course winning or losing that final is a big change, but I am very happy about all the things that happen to me and I am going to fight to win another title here. But still a great season for me,” he said.
He also said that he gives more importance to being healthy, happy and competitive.
Said Nadal, “As I tell you before, for me, more than winning grand slams or not, of course, if I win, I will be more happy but is about being healthy and feel myself well and competitive. That’s already happened in the whole season. That’s most important thing for me.”
Although Nadal dominated the match, the opening set was all about the power and accuracy of the Argentine Del Potro.
The 24th seeded Del Potro had saved two match points against Dominic Thiem in the last 16 and had registered a shocking win over Swiss legend Roger Federer in the quarter-finals but Nadal fought back hard, winning nine successive games to gain control of the match at the Arthur Ashe Stadium, where stars like Tiger Woods and Leonardo DiCaprio were present.
It was an ,”important day” in the office for the The King of the Clay Court,” as Nadal in his interaction with the reporters said, “Important victory against a great opponent. He came to that match with confidence after beating Roger, Dominic, too. A lot of the matches he played this tournament have been a tough one. But at the same time, I think I played a solid match.”
He also said that he brought about a bit of change in his game after the first set which made the difference at the end. He said, “After the first set I changed it a little bit, changed my tactic, strategy change a little bit. And that makes the difference.”
Sania-Peng face a semi-final exit in the US Open
The combination of India’s Sania Mirza and China’s Shuai Peng failed to cross the semi-final hurdle in the US Open as they were handed a 4-6, 4-6 defeat at the hands of Martina Hingis and Yung-Jan Chan on Friday.
Despite starting well in both the sets, the Sania/Peng failed to capitalise on their advantage, succumbing to a straight sets defeat. They had a total of 10 break point opportunities but could only convert two which is in high contrast to the Hingis-Chan duo, who converted four out of their seven break point opportunities to make it to the finals.
Although Sania Mirza ended up on the losing side, it was a season-best performance for her at the Majors after she failed to make it past the third rounds in the both of the Australian Open and the Wimbledon while making a first round exit from the French Open.