ATP US Open: Novak Djokovic downs Matteo Berrettini to remain on history course

World no. 1 Novak Djokovic moves two wins away from tennis glory and a calendar Grand Slam in New York following a 5-7, 6-2, 6-2, 6-3 triumph over Matteo Berrettini. The encounter lasted three hours and 26 minutes, and Novak came from a set down against Matteo like in the Wimbledon final, staying composed and moving over the top with reliable performance in sets two, three and four. Djokovic won 30 points more than Berrettini, hitting a similar number of winners as his opponent and staying under 30 unforced errors to control the rallies and sail into the last four. The Italian converted one out of five break chances and lost over 40% of the points in his games for certain troubles, as the Serb broke him five times from 16 opportunities. Thus, Novak will compete in his 12th US Open semi-final, becoming the fourth player with that many appearances in the last four at a single Major after Jimmy Connors, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.

Novak Djokovic defeated Matteo Berrettini in four sets to reach the US Open semis.

Despite only one break, the opening set went to the distance after numerous deuces and lasted 77 minutes. Novak saved a break point in the opening game with an ace and reached three deuces on the return at 2-1 before Matteo held with a winner at the net to stay in touch. The Italian had to work hard behind the initial shot in game six, surviving seven deuces and two break chances to resist and keep the serve intact after over 12 minutes. Earning two break points in the next one, Matteo sprayed a forehand error to squander his chance and keep Novak on the positive side. Berrettini stayed composed and grabbed a break at 5-5 with a forehand crosscourt winner, moving in front and closing the opener after deuce in the next one for 7-5 in 77 minutes. Raising his level, Novak lost only three points behind the initial shot in set number two and grabbed a break in game four following a marvelous return.

Losing ground, Berrettini faced five break points in game six and got broken for the second time at 2-5 to hand the set to Djokovic. Producing one good hold after another, Novak dropped five points in his games in the third set and earned two breaks for 6-2. He broke Matteo at 15 in game two when the Italian sprayed a backhand error and closed the set with a break at 15 in game eight to move closer to the finish line. With the victory clearly within his sight, Djokovic lost six points on serve in the fourth set and kept the pressure on the other side. The Serb broke the Italian with a forehand winner in the second game exactly three hours since the start of the encounter and served well in the remaining games to seal the deal with a service winner at 5-3 for a place in the semis.