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Can anything stop a Nadal-Federer US Open semi-final?

| 05.09.2017

They’ve never faced each other at the US Open before

Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal have played each other 37 times around the world. They’ve produced some truly unforgettable matches. But they’ve never met at the US Open before. That could be about to change.

Five of the world’s top ten male tennis players haven’t taken part in this year’s US Open. And Federer and Nadal were both placed in the top half of the draw.

They’re now on course to meet in the semi-final. All that stands between them is Juan Martin del Potro and Andrey Rublev.

Power Hitter

Federer faces Juan Martin del Potro in tomorrow’s quarter-final. Del Potro won the US Open when he was 20-years-old in 2009, beating both Federer and Nadal along the way.

Del Potro has a fearsome forehand but several wrist injuries prevented him from becoming the force he promised to in the early stages of his career.

The 28-year-old can still be a match for anyone on his day though. He pulled off an astonishing comeback to knock out sixth seed Dominic Thiem to reach the quarter-finals.

He was suffering from flu and a fever and only took three games in the first two sets. He could’ve crumbled but somehow managed to dig deep and win the final three sets to progress.

Federer is the clear favourite to make the semis at 1/5. However, Del Potro has the quality to make him pay for any errors.

Promising Russian

Andrey Rublev stands in Rafael Nadal’s path. The 19-year-old has already knocked out the seventh and ninth seeds.

Rublev upset David Goffin to win in straight sets on Monday. In contrast to Del Potro’s last 16 match, he delivered a very controlled display.

Now he has a chance to make the first Grand Slam semi-final of his career.

Nadal should win at 1/12. Rublev has absolutely nothing to lose though. The young Russian isn’t under any pressure and that could work to his advantage.

If there aren’t any surprises, tennis fans in New York will finally be treated to seeing Federer and Nadal clash.

It would pit elegance against energy. And while that may be reductive, their contrasting styles make for great tennis matches.

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Daniel Anwar

Daniel has written about sport for Coral, Squawka, FourFourTwo and the Premier League, among others.