US Open digest: Rafael Nadal wins epic five-setter against Dominic Thiem

The Spaniard is now through to the semi-finals but women’s champion Sloane Stephens is out

Rafael Nadal US Open tennis grand slam Dominic Thiem
Rafael Nadal celebrates his victory against Dominic Thiem in the US Open
(Image credit: Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/AFP/Getty Images)

World No.1 and defending champion Rafael Nadal has won a “great battle” against Dominic Thiem to reach the US Open semi-finals.

The Spaniard beat his Austrian opponent 0-6 6-4 7-5 6-7 (4-7) 7-6 (7-5) in a five-set classic that lasted for four hours and 49 minutes, and finished at 2.03am New York time.

After the epic quarter-final Nadal was full of praise for ninth seed Thiem. Nadal told the BBC: “I said to Dominic: ‘I’m very sorry and keep going.’ He has plenty of time to win. He will have his chances in the future without a doubt. It was a great battle.”

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In the final four, Nadal will now play 2009 champion Juan Martin del Potro, who secured a 6-7 (5-7) 6-3 7-6 (7-4) 6-2 win over John Isner.

Williams through, Stephens out

In the women’s singles, Serena Williams progressed to the semi-finals with a 6-4 6-3 win against Czech eighth seed Karolina Pliskova.

The American, who is 36, is aiming for a 24th Grand Slam title to equal Margaret Court’s all-time record. She said: “I don’t think I have another ten years of having opportunities to be able to play and win championships. Every match really means a lot to me. I kind of go out there and I just do the best that I can.”

Defending women’s champion Sloane Stephens is out of the tournament after a 6-2 6-3 loss against 19th seed Anastasija Sevastova. Sevastova, who is Latvian, will now play Williams in the semi-finals.

Tonight’s US Open quarter-finals order of play

Arthur Ashe Stadium (seeds in brackets, all times UK)

  • 5pm: Naomi Osaka (20) vs. Lesia Tsurenko
  • 6.15pm: Marin Cilic (7) vs. Kei Nishikori (21)
  • 12am: Carla Suarez Navarro (30) vs. Madison Keys (14)
  • 1.15am: Novak Djokovic (6) vs. John Millman

US Open semi-finals

Men’s semi-final line-up

  • Rafael Nadal (1) vs. Juan Martin del Potro (3)
  • Marin Cilic (7) or Kei Nishikori vs. Novak Djokovic (6) or John Millman

Women’s semi-final line-up

  • Serena Williams (17) vs. Anastasija Sevastova (19)
  • Carla Suarez Navarro (30) or Madison Keys (14) vs. Naomi Osaka (20) or Lesia Tsurenko

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