The eighth open time for Rafael Nadal is one of the last four

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The eighth open time for Rafael Nadal is one of the last four. The first Grand Slam semifinals were reached by Matteo Berrettini, Bianca Andreescu and Belinda Bencic. Gaël Monfils attempted to catch his breath at a stifling Arthur Ashe Stadium at the waist, one on his shoulder and the other on his racket handle.

For days at the United States Open, the weather had been exceptionally cool and dry, but humidity rolled in on Wednesday, testing the power and determination of 33-year-old Monfils and his 23-year-old opponent, Matteo Berrettini, as they traded roundhouse matches for almost four hours of exhausting tennis.

But the atmospheric conditions fell relative to the stress built up by the two players alone by a captivating battle that did not end until Berrettini, the 24th-seeded, won the match’s 324th point. It was the fourth time an Italian advanced to the Open Era Grand Slam tournament’s single knockout phase.

Berrettini will play No. 2, Rafael Nadal on Friday, who had to fight to beat No. 20 Diego Schwartzman, 6-4, 7-5, 6-2, in a match closer to the score and finished at 12:39. U.S. Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic and his competitors. Open, to win his 19th Grand Slam title, Nadal is now the heavy favourite.

The last Italian male player to reach a U.S. Corrado Barazzutti, who beat Brian Gottfried in 1977 before losing to Jimmy Connors in a semifinal, was the opening contest. Barazzutti, the captain of the teams of the Italian Davis Cup and Fed Cup, was sitting in Berrettini’s box on Wednesday cheering, waiting, worrying, gasping and agonizing with anyone else who saw or played in the game.

“I thought, one of the greatest games I’ve ever seen,” said Berrettini in an interview on-court. “I’ve played, but I’ve also watched.”Berrettini has the greatest chance right now, but he may have to rein in his nerves when he double-failed on his first level of competition— 5-3, 40-30, of the fifth level. He failed to transform to three more matching points as Monfils kept going deep to the limit of the competition.

Lastly, Monfils struck a lengthy break from a 125-mile-per-hour service at 6-5 in the tiebreaker, and Berrettini collapsed on trial. Then he jumped up and walked to the net to shake hands with Monfils as he walked.

Defeated players are not known to pound their chests, but Monfils would have been justified in doing so, considering how much authority he showed in the game. In mutual appreciation, instead of placing Berrettini’s hand on the internet, the Frenchman embraced the two rivals. “What a wonderful struggle,” said Berrettini. “I have to congratulate Gaël.” The couple practiced together in court and discussed how to help each other. Svitolina, who will be playing Serena Williams in Thursday’s match, watched Wednesday’s Monfils ‘ box, knowing better than most of what he was going through in the game. “I am proud of myself and I will be pleased,” said Monfils. “Tomorrow I’m going to cheer for my wife. Definitely, if it could be another day.

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