Novak Djokovic moved into the last four of the US Open on Wednesday evening with a comfortable three sets victory over surprise package John Millman.
The unseeded Australian, who had sensationally dumped out Roger Federer in the previous round, was no match for the Serb, who always had the upper hand as he ran out a 6-3, 6-4, 6-4 winner to make his 11th straight US open semi-final.
A gutsy display from the 55th ranked player certainly earned him the adoration of the crowd on Arthur Ashe, but the 30-year old was found wanting at crucial points during the game as the more-experienced Djokovic turned things up a notch whenever needed.
Things started well for the two-time winner as he raced into a 3-0 lead, and despite Millman’s best efforts he could not claw the break back as the Serb remained comfortable on serve.
The second set was a struggle for both players in the humid conditions, Djokovic at times struggling with cramp, while Millman was granted permission to leave the court for fresh gear as he continued to sweat profusely.
— US Open Tennis (@usopen) September 6, 2018
The interruption, however, did little to put Djokovic off his game as he continued to threaten the all-action Aussie’s serve, eventually breaking through in game nine at the third attempt as he took a two-set lead.
In the third set, Djokovic again claimed the break. But just when it looked to be all over, Millman raised his hopes of a Federer-style comeback with a first break of his own as he levelled the set at 3-3.
Djokovic was not to be denied though, as he timed the final break of serve to perfection, grabbing the advantage in game nine before serving out to love to seal his passage into the final four.
“I was really tested,” Djokovic said on court after the match. “Credit to John, he put up a great battle. He’s had an amazing tournament and to come out and fight for three hours he deserves a round of applause.
“We were both struggling and trying to hang in there. There was a lot of sweating but you just need to survive. They weren’t easy conditions but it’s the same for both players.”
“He apologised for going to change [clothes] in the second set but I said ‘it’s OK, I need the rest’. John is never going to hand you the win.”
Djokovic will meet Japan’s Kei Nishikori in the semi-final after he defeated Marin Cilic in an epic-five setter.
Stream every match at the US Open live on the FOX+ app and catch up on highlights of any action you’ve missed. For more info on FOX+ click here or to start your *free 30 day trial download the FOX+ app. * FOX+ is available in select territories