NEW YORK, Sept 7, 2019 (BSS/AFP) – Rafael Nadal, an 18-time Grand Slam
singles champion, advanced to his fifth US Open final on Friday by battling
past Italy’s Matteo Berrettini 7-6 (8/6), 6-4, 6-1.
The 33-year-old Spaniard will play for his fourth US Open crown on Sunday
at Arthur Ashe Stadium against Russian fifth seed Daniil Medvedev, who
reached his first Grand Slam final by defeating Bulgarian Grigor Dimitrov 7-6
(7/5), 6-4, 6-3.
“It means a lot to be back where I am today after some tough moments at
the beginning of the season,” said Nadal, who battled a right hip injury
early in the year.
A victory Sunday would put the world number two Nadal only one win shy of
Roger Federer’s record men’s total of 20 Grand Slam titles.
Nadal will play in his 27th career Grand Slam final, his fifth in New
York, as he chases a fourth US Open title, one shy of the record of five
shared by Federer, Pete Sampras and Jimmy Connors.
Nadal beat Medvedev in last month’s Montreal final in their only prior
meeting. But the world number two skipped Cincinnati, where Medvedev was
champion the following week.
“He’s one of the more solid players on tour. He’s making steps forward
every single week. He’s the player that is playing better on tour this
summer,” Nadal said.
“I need to be playing at my best.
Medvedev, in his first Grand Slam final at 23, has gone 20-2 in the past
six weeks with runner-up efforts in Washington and Canada, a title in
Cincinnati and a breakthrough US Open run.