Sunday, 16 December, 2018

Djokovic prevails over Nishikori to reach Wimbledon semifinals

Novak Djokovic equals Jimmy Connors and Andy Murray by reaching Wimbledon quarter-finals Djokovic completed his match
Sidney Guerrero | 11 July, 2018, 20:54

He will next face either two-time champion Rafael Nadal or fifth-seeded Juan Martin del Potro.

After racing through the first set, Djokovic was handed his first code violation for unsportsmanlike conduct after bouncing his racquet into the grass in frustration at squandering three break points in the third game of the second set.

"I feel like I'm peaking at the right moment".

Meanwhile, after dropping the second set to Nishikori, Djokovic wrested back the momentum for good in the third, coming from 0-40 down at 2-2 to hold serve.

"You're saying in the point if I toss my racket like this I'm ruining the court?" Do you think that or not?

Djokovic secured that game with a forehand victor, then saved two game points on Nishikori's serve before converting his first match point with a forehand down the line.

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The only other times Federer has surrendered a two-set lead came against Lleyton Hewitt in Switzerland's 2003 Davis Cup semi-final loss to Australia in Melbourne, to David Nalbandian in the 2005 Masters Cup decider and to Jo- Wilfried Tsonga and Novak Djokovic at consecutive slams at Wimbledon and the US Open in 2011.

Nishikori, playing Djokovic on grass for the first time and seeking to end a 12-match losing streak against the Serb, held to 3-2 in the third set before running out of steam against an opponent in merciless form.

"I think the first warning was unneccessary", said Djokovic, who was sanctioned in the second set for spearing his racquet into the court.

The match was played there after Novak Djokovic, having played three of his opening four matches away from Centre Court, had his request to play in the main stadium granted. But then the Japanese player, world number four in March past year, survived four break points early in the second set to level. "I don't think it's fair but it is what it is".

Now ranked only 21st in the world, with his career stalling since his 12th Grand Slam title at the 2016 French Open, last year's Wimbledon saw him retire in the quarter-finals with a season-ending elbow injury.

Asked whether he was a "man on a mission" to get back to where he left off, the Serb could only agree: "Of course, that's why I'm here", he said.

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