Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Nadal in Epic Fight to Face Djokovic

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Nadal in Epic Fight to Face Djokovic

Article excerpt

RAFAEL Nadal battled for more than two-and-a-half hours to defeat fellow Spaniard David Ferrer and preserve his unbeaten record at the ATP World Tour Finals.

Ostensibly, there was nothing for either man to play for - 200 ranking points and PS109,000 aside - with Nadal already guaranteed top spot in the group and Ferrer eliminated.

But for two hours and 37 minutes they traded blows until Nadal, who has never won this tournament, finally prevailed 6-7 (2/7) 6-3 6-4. The fifth seed must have thought it would be a straightforward afternoon when he broke serve twice to lead 3-0 in the opening set, but it turned out to be anything but.

Nadal, who beat both Stan Wawrinka and Andy Murray in straight sets, must recover for a semi-final clash with Novak Djokovic today.

Djokovic and Nadal have played each other more times than any other two players, and Djokovic will look to tie their head-to-head for the first time at 23-23.

The Serbian has dominated the rivalry over the past two years, winning seven of their last eight matches, and has not dropped a set to Nadal this year. …

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