Nadal survives Thiem test to reach U.S. Open semis

Nadal survives Thiem test to reach U.S. Open semis

After dropping the first set, 6-0, in a lackadaisical performance, Nadal fought back throughout the 4-hour 49-minute match to ultimately win, 0-6, 6-4, 7-5, 6-7 (4), 7-6 (5).

Rafa finally started to play with more aggression in set number three, saving a break point at 2-2 before wasting two game points in game seven and allowing Thiem to break him with a return victor.

World No.1 Rafael Nadal beat Dominic Thiem in a grueling five-set quarterfinal, recovering from a disastrous opening set to clinch the match in dramatic style.

"I suffered, that's the right word", Nadal said as he closed in on his fourth US Open title and 18th Grand Slam victory.

Nadal met the Austrian in the quarter-finals of the United States open, a tournament the Spaniard has won four times.

Nadal will play Juan Martin del Potro in a semi-final, the Argentine outslugging John Isner in four sets.

"He's young, he has plenty of time to win big tournaments", he said on court. The way it ended up in the fifth set tiebreaker, from there it's 50-50.

Thiem blasted 13 winners, made only two unforced errors and allowed Nadal just seven points in winning an extraordinary opener. Dominic had 13 winners and just two unforced error and it was impossible for Nadal to keep that pace, losing serve at 15 in the opening game of the match after a forehand victor from Thiem.

Spanish star Nadal - facing his fellow seed away from clay for the first time after 10 previous meetings - was 30-29 when losing the first set at a major but he rediscovered his best form to level the match, rising to the challenge by converting both break-point chances - having earned none in the first set - to halt the red-hot Thiem.

The top-ranked Nadal captured his 11th title in Paris by beating Thiem in straight sets in June. It was a very tough start for me.

He fell behind by a break in the third set before rebounding.

It was just the fourth time in 282 career Grand Slam matches that Nadal lost a set 6-0, and the first time he won a match after that poor of a start.

After two five set battles in the first three rounds of the US Open‚ South Africa's Kevin Anderson just didn't have enough in his armoury to escape the fourth round on Sunday night.

Stiller and Nadal go way back, as the actor has participated in charity tennis events with Nadal in the past.

"It's going to be stuck in my mind", he said.

"I told myself "wake up", said Nadal.

It was the longest match of this year's US Open and Nadal jumped over the net to console 25-year-old Thiem after the victory. Indeed, when Johnson won the third set to take a 2-1 lead, Thiem looked to be in trouble. But Thiem closed out the game after giving up the first three points, putting Nadal under the gun, serving to survive to a tiebreak.

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