Highlights, Wimbledon 2019, Men's Semi-Finals: Roger Federer beats Rafael Nadal in classic to set up title-clash with Novak Djokovic

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Highlights, Wimbledon 2019, Men's Semi-Finals: Roger Federer beats Rafael Nadal in classic to set up title-clash with Novak Djokovic
  • 00:48 (IST)

    END OF PLAY!

    That's all from us at Firstpost in our coverage of the men's singles semifinals. We will be back tomorrow for the women's final which featues Serena Williams taking on Simona Halep. Remember, history and milestones riding on that match up as well. Up until then, good night!

  • 00:47 (IST)

    Social media reactions to Federer's win

    Here is how Twitterati reacted to Federer's four set win over Nadal. 

  • 00:46 (IST)

    Nadal wishes Federer luck for the final and plans to be back next year. 

  • 00:44 (IST)

    Bits and bobs from Nadal's press conference

    I had my chances but he played a little bit better than me. He played aggressive, he played a great match, well done.

    His return was better than mine this afternoon, I didn’t receive well today and when that happens he has the advantage and is in control of the match generally.

    I think my backhand wasn’t as good as in previous rounds. I was a bit worried about it and was not able to move with freedom with it.

    Nadal, as always, gracious in defeat.  

  • 00:43 (IST)

    REPORT: Roger Federer sets up Novak Djokovic final after outclassing Rafael Nadal

    Roger Federer waited 11 years to get another shot at Rafael Nadal on Centre Court. This one was a semi-final, not a final. It was settled in four sets, not five. Felt like just as much of a classic contest, though, one that anyone present is not likely to forget. That, of course, includes Federer, who managed to pull away and beat long-time rival Nadal 7-6 (3), 1-6, 6-3, 6-4 on Friday by finally coming through on his fifth match point.

  • 00:41 (IST)

    Roger Federer's wife Mirka there at the end was visibly emotional. Not surprisingly. 

  • 00:34 (IST)

    Usually it is Federer who is woeful with challenges. Today it was Rafa. 

  • 00:34 (IST)

    Ayaz Memon is spot on here. Federer, Nadal don't get into mudsliding despite their long time rivalry. Never have. Maybe that's what makes it special?

  • 00:33 (IST)

    David Beckham is all of us!

  • 00:31 (IST)

    Which way will things go on Sunday? 

  • 00:30 (IST)

    Should be a great final between Djokovic and Federer. 'Big Three' down to 'Big Two'.

  • 00:30 (IST)

    A warm embrace at the net then. Didn't expect anything else to be fair. 

  • 00:23 (IST)

    A look ahead to the final: Federer vs Djokovic. 

  • 00:22 (IST)

    A triumphant Roger Federer after winning #FEDAL40. (Image: Reuters)

  • 00:20 (IST)

    The point that clinched it for Roger Federer

  • 00:19 (IST)

    Post-match talk: Roger Federer

    Federer on BBC: "I’m exhausted. It was tough at the end. Rafa played some unbelievable shots to stay in the match. I enjoyed it. The crowd were amazing. I had spells where I was serving very well and probably the biggest points in the match went my way. That first set was huge as well, to get the lead."

    "Novak played great against Bautista Agut. He’s supreme again. He’s not No 1 just by chance. He’s been so good for the last year. I’m very excited to say the least."

  • 00:15 (IST)

    Roger Federer into the Wimbledon final

    Roger Federer is through to his 12th Wimbledon final after beating long-time rival Rafael Nadal 7-6, 1-6, 6-3, 6-4. This has not been the "great" of 2008 but it has been exceptional nonetheless. After three hours and two minutes, Federer is into the Wimbledon final where he will face Novak Djokovic. 

  • 00:13 (IST)

    Nadal 6-7, 6-1, 3-6, 4-5 *Federer in the fourth set

    Federer serving for a place in the Wimbledon final. Thin margins on display as Federer's first serve finds the tiniest of line and Roger starts with an ace. But Nadal claws back by forcing Federer into an error. The Swiss with a lovely forehand return deep into the court and the angle is far too much for Rafa. Nadal makes it 30-30 after Roger sends his groundstroke long. Federer challenges and it is indeed long. He has no challenges remaining. Federer had the perfect approach shot, had Nadal scrambling, got the smash for the taking but Roger miscues the smash and it goes long. Break point for Nadal. Twice it seemed Nadal had the point in his grasp and both times Federer got it back. In the end, Nadal sends his shot into the net. At deuce, Federer with a deft drop shot and he has a match point once again. Third match point for Roger Federer. How do you describe this? Mirka has her head in her hands. Both going hammer and tongs and both getting the ball back. In the end Nadal with a winner into open court. At deuce, Federer with an ace. Fourth match point for Federer. Looks like Nadal is caged and locked in but he gets out of it with a backhand winner cross court as Federer moves up to the net. Deuce once again. Once again a big serve and put away by Federer. Fifth match point. Nadal sends his backhand long and Federer can finally celebrate. 

  • 00:04 (IST)

    Injury to Nadal?

    Nadal has taken off the protective tape on his left foot. He had asked for something from his box earlier in the match. Rafa could have taken a medical time out but he's opting to play on. Gets his socks and shoes back on and he's ready to play. 

  • 00:03 (IST)

    Nadal* 6-7, 6-1, 3-6, 4-5 Federer in the fourth set

    Nadal serving to stay in the match. At 40-15, Nadal has a chance to put away a simple serve-and-volley approach but he cops it and it hits the top of the net. Federer grazing the deep part of the court and the backhand lands narrowly in. On to deuce. Net chord coming to Federer's aid after Nadal did wonderfully to get his forehand back on the stretch. But Federer is on hand to whip a forehand winner and bring the game back to deuce. A deep return on the forehand by Federer and he has a match point. Big serve down the T and Federer's return goes long. Deuce once again. ACE! Rafa staying with his strategy of going down the centre and it pays dividends. Federer would like to keep this going - a comfortable backhand winner. Very easy on the eye as always. Second match point for Federer comes up as Nadal's forehand is straight into the net. This time Nadal goes out wide on the backhand and Federer's backhand sails long. Nadal with a thumping backhand but Federer gets it back, somehow, and Nadal moves up to close out the point with a drop volley. Ace on the ad court and Nadal holds having saved two match points. 

  • 23:54 (IST)

    Nadal 6-7, 6-1, 3-6, 3-5 *Federer in the fourth set

    Federer yet to see a break point this set or since the fifth game of the third set. Nadal getting little chances but Federer far superior. Roger holds to go one point from the final.  

  • 23:50 (IST)

    How incredibly good is that?

  • 23:49 (IST)

    Nadal* 6-7, 6-1, 3-6, 3-4 Federer in the fourth set

    Nadal with a fantastic point. Nothing wrong with it. He had Federer on the run, side-to-side and then played a delicate drop shot. But on the other side is Federer. A master on the grass. A master here at SW19. The Swiss runs along on the backhand and flicks the ball over the net for a cross court winner. As you will. But, Nadal holds in the end. Jogs along to his chair. 

  • 23:45 (IST)

    Nadal 6-7, 6-1, 3-6, 2-4 *Federer in the fourth set

    After a long time, a long rally, this one going 26 shots, in favour of Nadal. Both players pounding the ball before it is Federer who nets the backhand. Just the second first serve of the game and it is important enough to give Roger a chance to hold. He follows it up with another first serve, this time down the T, and Nadal's reply lands wide. 

  • 23:40 (IST)

    Nadal* 6-7, 6-1, 3-6, 2-3 Federer in the fourth set

    Rafa with the quick close of business this time. Holds serve with a forehand winner that clips the baseline and the Spaniard, as he has always done, not going away without a fight. 

  • 23:37 (IST)

    Nadal 6-7, 6-1, 3-6,1-3 *Federer in the fourth set

    Ruthless serving from Roger Federer and he holds to love to consolidate the early break. Talk about momentum shift from the second set. 

  • 23:33 (IST)

    Nadal* 6-7, 6-1, 3-6,1-2 Federer in the fourth set

    Federer opens up the court with a backhand cross court and puts away the short ball with a thumping forehand winner on the other side. Jump, skip, hop and BANG! Roger has two break point opportunities. One saved by Nadal with a backhand winner. Federer with a deep reply on the second serve and Nadal's backhand back, however, goes long. BREAK FOR FEDERER! 

  • 23:30 (IST)

    Nadal 6-7, 6-1, 3-6,1-1 *Federer in the fourth set

    The quality of the points has improved significantly but it is Federer who is coming out on top now. Federer holds to 30 and the fourth set starts with a hold each. 

  • 23:26 (IST)

    Nadal* 6-7, 6-1, 3-6,1-0 Federer in the fourth set

    Bit of a bother for Rafa in the opening game of the fourth set but not enough to see the game go long. He holds after dropping two points. How crucial will it be that he's serve first in this set?

  • 23:25 (IST)

    The difference between the two players in that third set was Federer making 15 winners to 2 unforced errors. 

  • 23:23 (IST)

    Roger Federer takes a two set to one lead. (Image: Reuters)

  • 23:20 (IST)

    Third set stats

    Nadal: 2 aces, 1 double fault, 72% on first serve, 78% first serve points won, 0/1 at the net, 0/3 on break points, 5 winners, 6 unforced errors

    Federer: 4 aces, 1 double fault, 74% on first serve, 80% first serve points won, 7/8 at the net, 1/3 on break points, 15 winners, 2 unforced errors

  • 23:18 (IST)

    Roger Federer wins the third set

    Roger Federer looked down and out in the second set with poor service games but he's roared back to take the third set 6-3 in 38 minutes. All it needed the 20-time grand slam winner was one break of serve and he has the upper hand in this match.

  • 23:17 (IST)

    Nadal 6-7, 6-1, 3-6 *Federer in the third set

    Roger Federer serving for the third set. Two well placed first serves by Federer and he's inching closer to taking the lead once again. Rafa tried to come up to the net with a slice backhand but it had enough air to sit up nicely for Federer. The Swiss gladly puts it away with a backhand winner. Federer takes the third set after Nadal nets his running forehand. 

  • 23:14 (IST)

    Nadal* 6-7, 6-1, 3-5 Federer in the third set

    Nadal looking to keep this set going. He starts off with a forehand into the net. Federer has a look in with Nadal making another error. Rafa gets back-to-back big serves going and makes it 30-30. Holds in the end with two more strong serves and punch shots. 

  • 23:10 (IST)

    Nadal 6-7, 6-1, 2-5 *Federer in the third set

    After three lengthy games laced with break points, Roger Federer helps himself to a comfortable hold. A lovely backhand smash to close the game out. 

  • 23:07 (IST)

    Nadal* 6-7, 6-1, 2-4 Federer in the third set

    Complete turnaround from the second set and Federer has Nadal on the ropes now. Again. 0-30. Big serve and Federer nets the reply. Spaniard sends his forehand long and Federer has two break points to go two breaks ahead. 117 mph serve out wide and Federer is unable to get it back. Neither is he able to do so on the next point. Nadal is pumped and that is usually warning signs for his opponents. Rafa holds to stay in the third set after saving two break points. 

  • 23:02 (IST)

    Kobe is watching!

  • 23:00 (IST)

    Nadal 6-7, 6-1, 1-4 *Federer in the third set

    Nadal with a possible break back opportunity. He has Federer at 0-30. Uh-oh! Rafa with a poor return and Federer breathes a sigh of relief. Not so soon! Federer with a double fault, first of the match, and Nadal has two break points. One saved with a serve and smash put away. They might be well into their 30s but no sign of lack of fitness from either. Federer saving yet another break point after a lengthy rally that sees Nadal making an error. At deuce, Nadal with a deep return into Federer's feet and the backhand half volley is into the net. The third break point of the game also goes to waste. Federer with a strong approach and Nadal sends the desperate backhand into the net. A 25 shot rally ensues at deuce with both players finding the depth on their groundstrokes before Nadal goes for too much angle. Federer finally holds as Nadal nets his backhand. Three break points saved by Federer there to consolidate the break. 

  • 22:53 (IST)

    Nadal* 6-7, 6-1, 1-3 Federer in the third set

    What. A. Shot! Roger Federer with a breathtaking backhand winner over the highest part of the net. Sensational stuff. And he follows it up with a winner on the other side. Nadal tried to go for a winner of his own but Federer fetches it successfully to whip a cross court winner for a break point. FEDERER BREAKS! A duel at the net Nadal's volleys are not convincing enough to beat Federer. 

  • 22:48 (IST)

    Nadal 6-7, 6-1, 1-2 *Federer in the third set

    Another hold at love for Roger Federer. He serves out with an ace down the T. Easy as they come for both players in the third set. 

  • 22:46 (IST)

    Nadal* 6-7, 6-1, 1-1 Federer in the third set

    Comfortable hold from Nadal as well. He drops one point on his serve and levels the third set. Short points thus far - unlike the second set - and much like the first set. 

  • 22:45 (IST)

    Nadal 6-7, 6-1, 0-1 *Federer in the third set

    After consecutive breaks on his two service games, Federer starts the third set with a hold at love. Just what he needs. 

  • 22:44 (IST)

    Interesting point from Mahesh Bhupathi

  • 22:42 (IST)

    Second set stats

    Nadal: 2 aces, 0 double faults, 65% on first serve, 73% first serve points won, 2/3 at the net, 2/4 on break points, 6 winners, 2 unforced errors

    Federer: 0 aces, 0 double faults, 59% on first serve, 54% first serve points won, 3/8 at the net, 0/2 on break points, 8 winners, 11 unforced errors

  • 22:40 (IST)

    Rafa Nadal wins the second set 6-1

    After that cagey first set by both players, Roger Federer's level dropping significantly and Rafael Nadal upping the intensity to level the match at one set all. Federer looked comfortable in the first set but it has suddenly gone missing. 

  • 22:39 (IST)

    Nadal* 6-7, 6-1 Federer in the second set

    Nadal serving for the second set and to make it one set all. At 15-0 we see the much-missed SABR! Sneak attack by Roger for the uninitiated. And it doesn't come off. The half volley is into the net. Nadal brings up three set points then. Federer fails to get it back and that is a simple hold for Nadal to level this match. 

  • 22:36 (IST)

    Nadal 6-7, 5-1 *Federer in the second set

    Another poor service game from Federer and Nadal has a break point opportunity. The count of mishits rises from Federer - latest a forehand which hits the frame and goes flying into the crowd. BREAK! 

  • 22:32 (IST)

    Nadal* 6-7, 4-1 Federer in the second set

    Simple hold for the Spaniard. Federer erring at the net and a mishit on the forehand in that game. The second set suddenly going one way!

  • 22:29 (IST)

    Nadal 6-7, 3-1 *Federer in the second set

    Two unforced errors from Federer and suddenly Nadal has three break point chances. Federer tries to go down the centre on the first serve but misses. BREAK! Nadal gets the first break of the match as Federer sends his backhand slider into the net. Sloppy service game from Roger. 

After going more than 1½ years without playing each other anywhere, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal will be meeting at a second consecutive Grand Slam tournament when they face off in Wimbledon's semi-finals.

Last month, Nadal got his shot at Federer on red clay, winning their wind-whipped French Open semi-final in straight sets on the way to a 12th title there.

"We had some brutal conditions to play (in) there. But it was a joy to play against Rafa there, on his court. And, of course, I'd love to play against him here at Wimbledon," Federer said.

On Friday, Federer gets his shot at Nadal on grass and hopes to prolong his pursuit of a ninth championship at the All England Club.

"Means a lot for me, and probably for him, too," Nadal said.

If it's hard to believe more than a decade has passed since these two rivals last shared a court at Wimbledon, it's also tough to fathom how it is that they have dominated their sport as long as they have. Federer ranks first among men with 20 career Grand Slam titles. Nadal is next with 18. Add in the third-place count of 15 trophies belonging to Novak Djokovic, who is seeded No. 1 and plays No. 23 Roberto Bautista Agut of Spain in Friday's other semi-final, and this terrific trio has won 53 of the last 64 major championships.

That includes 14 of the last 16 at Wimbledon. Also: 10 in a row everywhere over the past 2½ seasons.

Djokovic is seeking his fifth trophy, and second straight, at the All England Club, while Bautista Agut is making his Grand Slam semi-final debut.

Djokovic leads 7-3 head-to-head, but Bautista Agut won their two matchups this season, both on hard courts.

"Going to try to use my experience in being in these kind of matches, get myself tactically prepared," Djokovic said. "Hopefully I can execute everything I intend to do."

With inputs from Agencies.

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Updated Date: Jul 13, 2019 00:50:41 IST