It was another epic chapter to an epic rivalry. Of course, it was, what else did we expect?
In front of a packed arena, Rafael Nadal edged a late-night classic against old rival Novak Djokovic in the early hours of Wednesday in four sets to reach his 15th French Open semi-final.
The 13-time Roland Garros champion won the pair’s 59th career meeting 6-2, 4-6, 6-2, 7-6 (7/4) after a four-hour-and-12-minute quarter-final on a raucous Court Philippe Chatrier.
It may not have been the highest quality of matches between these two, but it certainly was dramatic and the levels they produced during a tough night where jaw-dropping often.
At one point in the second set, the two were involved in an 18-minute game. In fact, 10 games of the second set went up to 85 minutes as Djokovic seemed to fight back from a slow start.
But Nadal eventually sealed his eighth victory in 10 French Open matches against last year’s winner Djokovic to set up a last-four clash with third seed Alexander Zverev on Friday.
The 35-year-old has lost just three of his 113 matches on the Paris clay since his 2005 title-winning debut and now only trails Djokovic 30-29 in their career head-to-head.
The Spaniard, seeded fifth, remains on course for a record-extending 22nd Grand Slam title after lifting this year’s Australian Open, which Djokovic missed.
The 4 hour 12 minute blockbuster that extended beyond midnight naturally saw several reactions on social media.
Here is a look at the reactions:
(With inputs from AFP)