Djokovic 'overwhelmed' after downing Nadal in Wimbledon classic

Marcus Newton
July 15, 2018

Rafael Nadal has expressed frustration at an "error" from Wimbledon officials that greatly affected his semi-final loss to Novak Djokovic. Anderson beat John Isner in a six-hour semi-final that ended at 26-24 fifth set Friday night, pushing back the start of Djokovic vs. Nadal.

Isner is still seeking his first Grand Slam final appearance.

Emotions were running high for the 31-year-old on Saturday, as expected.

The level of play during this feast of gorgeous tennis was of the highest calibre.

Djokovic has endured a lot of setbacks in the past year.

Encouragingly, the 6ft 8in Anderson has been playing well enough to trouble anyone over the past year.

He was then knocked out of the Australian Open in the last 16 in January by Hyeon Chung, then ranked at 58.

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It all made for an unusual schedule, with the start of the women's final - normally the stand-alone showcase on the fortnight's last Saturday - delayed until Nadal and Djokovic finished. "I had surgery when I was quite young, and my dad, who coached me throughout my career, said, 'learn to play left-handed.' I didn't know that was going to come into play at this point in my career, at this stage, but that was obviously a vital point for me in the end".

"It just seems cruel and unusual punishment for these guys", former champion John McEnroe said on the BBC. He showed off his signature flexibility and athletic prowess against Nadal in the semifinals.

"It was one of those moments where I think time stopped for me".

Nadal will rue missing two returns, while he got a taste of his own medicine on the second chance when Djokovic feathered a drop shot over the net.

"It was hard for me to adapt to the indoor court, I didn't see too well. But I did try to, like, in Space Jam with Michael Jordan, when he was trying to stretch, that's probably something that comes to my mind to describe it". Djokovic required wins against the likes of Kyle Edmund, Kei Nishikori and the great Rafael Nadal who took him to five sets in a semifinal that should go down as one of the best matches ever on the grass courts of the All England Club.

So here's how to make sure you don't miss a minute of the action from Centre Court as Djokovic takes on Anderson in the Wimbledon final.

Friday proved to be another long day for Anderson, who said after the match that he hoped the 50-game fifth set would be "a sign for Grand Slams to change". "If I take my last couple years, I don't have much to lose myself". He slumped spiritually and physically after completing the career slam at Roland Garros in 2016, his aching elbow gave up on him here a year ago and he looked like a busted flush at the start of 2018; defeats to Hyeon Chung, Taro Daniel, Benoit Paire and Martin Klizan followed his elbow surgery and he even suggested that he might skip the grass after crashing out of the French Open to Marco Cecchinato. "We want to see Rafa!"

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