NEW YORK, Sept 8 (Reuters) - A ruthless Rafa Nadal powered past Juan Martin del Potro to move closer to a 16th grand slam title while South African Kevin Anderson battled his way into his maiden U.S. Open final on Friday.
Nadal lost the first set of his semi-final at Arthur Ashe stadium, struggling to counter the big-serving, hard-hitting Argentine’s early onslaught.
He quickly found his rhythm and produced a comeback to win the match 4-6 6-0 6-3 6-2 in two hours and 30 minutes. Nadal fired 45 winners as Del Potro ran out of steam.
“It’s been an amazing season for me and I‘m so happy to get a chance to fight for another title after a couple of seasons with injury troubles,” Nadal said after his match.
World number 32 Anderson became the lowest-ranked U.S. Open men’s singles finalist since the inception of the ATP rankings in 1973 when he survived an early wobble to down Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta 4-6 7-5 6-3 6-4.
“It’s been a long road,” Anderson, who overcame a right hip injury last year that had threatened his 2017 campaign, told reporters.
“I definitely felt as the match progressed, I felt more and more comfortable.”
Highlights from day 12 of the U.S. Open tennis championships on Friday (times GMT):
- Top seed Rafa Nadal came from begind to thrash Argentine Juan Martin del Potro 4-6 6-0 6-3 6-2 in their U.S. Open semi-final.
- The 15-times grand slam winner set up a title clash with South Africa’s Kevin Anderson.
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- South African Kevin Anderson fired 58 winners to reach his first grand slam final, beating 12th seed Spaniard Pablo Carreno Busta 4-6 7-5 6-3 6-4.
- Anderson, the world number 32, is the lowest-ranked U.S. Open men’s singles finalist since the inception of the ATP rankings in 1973.
- Top seeds Martina Hingis and Jamie Murray saved three set points to record a 6-4 7-6(8) victory over CoCo Vandeweghe and Horia Tecau in the mixed doubles semi-finals.
- The Swiss-Briton pair won the Wimbledon title earlier this year.
- Lucie Hradecka and Katerina Siniakova won an all-Czech women’s doubles semi-final, beating the third seed pairing of Lucie Safarova and Barbora Strycova 6-2 7-5.
- They will face Switzerland’s Martina Hingis and Chan Yung-jan of Taiwan in the final.
1750 ROJER AND TECAU WIN MEN‘S DOUBLES FINAL
- Dutchman Jean-Julien Rojer and Romania’s Horia Tecau won the men’s doubles title after beating Spaniards Feliciano Lopez and Marc Lopez 6-4 6-3.
- The number 12 seeds hit 41 winners between them and made just seven unforced errors as they romped to the title in just under an hour and a half.
1745 HINGIS AND CHAN INTO WOMEN‘S DOUBLES FINAL
- Second seeds Martina Hingis of Switzerland and Chan Yung-Jan of Taiwan reached the final of the women’s doubles with a 6-4 6-4 victory over fourth seeds Peng Shuai of China and India’s Sania Mirza.
- Top seed Rafa Nadal faces Argentine Juan Martin del Potro in the second semi-final. (Compiled by Hardik Vyas and Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; editing by Sudipto Ganguly)