Monday, January 30, 2023

Djokovic beats Norrie to reach Wimbledon men’s singles final

Britain’s Cameron Norrie was unable to capitalise on a confident start as Novak Djokovic fought back to reach the Wimbledon men’s singles final.
Norrie, 26, was bidding to become only the fourth Briton to reach the final at the All England Club in the Open era.
But after winning the first set, he lost 2-6 6-3 6-2 6-4 to the top seed.
Serbia’s Djokovic, going for a fourth consecutive title and a seventh overall, will face Australia’s Nick Kyrgios in Sunday’s final.
The 35-year-old will also bid for a 21st Grand Slam men’s title, which would put him one behind Rafael Nadal’s all-time record.
Spain’s Nadal, 36, was supposed to face Kyrgios in Friday’s second semi-final but withdrew from the match on Thursday because of an abdominal injury.
Now Djokovic has the chance to close the gap again on his enduring rival after ending the hopes of Norrie and a nation.
Norrie, seeded ninth, was the first British player since Johanna Konta in 2017 to reach a Wimbledon semi-final and was given partisan backing on Centre Court. The atmosphere became celebratory as Norrie broke three times to take the opening set, before coming increasingly stifled as Djokovic eventually found his level.

Rafael Nadal pulls out of semifinal with abdominal injury

Rafa Nadal’s hopes of completing a rare calendar year Grand Slam ended on Thursday when the Spaniard pulled out of his highly-anticipated Wimbledon semi-final showdown with Australian Nick Kyrgios with an abdominal strain. “I have to pull out of the tournament as I have been suffering with pain in abdominal,” said the 36-year-old, the holder of a men’s record 22 Grand Slam titles.
“I can’t imagine winning two matches with this (pain). For me the most important thing is happiness rather than the title even though everyone knows how much effort I put into this as I can’t risk being out of the sport for two to three months. “I am very sad.”
Nadal had triumphed at the Australian and French Opens this year and had been hoping to become the first man since Rod Laver in 1969 to complete the calendar-year slam. Nadal’s withdrawal mean Kyrgios becomes the first Australian to reach the men’s final at the All England Club since Mark Philippoussis in 2003.

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