October 24 2017, 03:44 | Van Peters
Shanghai Masters: Rafael Nadal beats Grigor Dimitrov to reach semi-finals
Grigor Dimitrov pulled off a spectacular drop-shot against Rafael Nadal at the Shanghai Masters in an eventual 4-6 7-6 (7-4) 4-6 defeat.
Del Potro ended up breaking Troicki's serve in that fifth game and prevailed 4-6 6-1 6-4.
Nadal has yet to drop serve in Shanghai.
Briton Jamie Murray and Brazil's Bruno Soares reached the doubles semi-finals with a 6-1 7-6 (8-6) victory over Raven Klaasen and Rajeev Ram.
Fourth-seeded Marin Cilic of Croatia also moved on by dispatching American Steve Johnson 7-6 (1), 6-4.
Dimitrov took Nadal into a decider at the China Open last week only to go off the boil when it mattered most to lose the game.
Sixth seed Dimitrov frequently had the final say during pulsating rallies, most impressively during the final set when he kept a point alive before winning it close to the net.
The shot, came early in the match - only the third game - and wouldn't have any bearing on the set either, with Nadal taking it 6-4.
Juan Martin del Potro, meanwhile, clambered off the court floor and from a set down to knock out Serbia's Viktor Troicki 4-6, 6-1, 6-4 and will play Roger Federer or unseeded Frenchman Richard Gasquet in the other semi.
"We haven't seen that from Nadal since the hardcourt season back at Indian Wells".
"Very happy, it was a very tough match, both of us played a very high level of tennis", said the 31-year-old Spaniard, the top seed.
"But if nothing unsafe happened, I will be here to play tomorrow and doing my best".
"Just focus on holding that momentum".
But Nadal took the match, although not without some difficulty, losing the second set on a tie-break.
Del Potro, who lost his serve for the only time in the match in the second game, won nine of his 15 service games at love.
The world No.2 broke Gasquet at 5-5 to gain the advantage and went on to take the first set.
The 2009 US Open champion's career has been blighted by wrist injuries and he has had three operations on the left one.
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