Novak Djokovic handed 13-time champion Rafael Nadal only his third defeat in 16 years and 108 matches at the French Open on Friday to reach his sixth Roland Garros final after an epic showdown that even beat the Covid-19 curfew that was in place in Paris.
In their 58th career clash, Djokovic triumphed 3-6, 6-3, 7-6 (7/4), 6-2 and stays on course to capture a 19th major and become the first man in over 50 years to win all four Slams twice.
Watch: ‘Best match I was ever a part of at Roland Garros’ – Djokovic after epic win against Nadal
French Open semi-final as it happened: Novak Djokovic ends Rafael Nadal’s reign at Roland Garros
Djokovic, the 2016 champion in Paris who had also beaten Nadal at the 2015 tournament, will face Stefanos Tsitsipas in Sunday’s final in what will be his 29th championship match at the Slams.
Tsitsipas had earlier become the first Greek to reach a Grand Slam final with a 6-3, 6-3, 4-6, 4-6, 6-3 victory over Germany’s Alexander Zverev.
Here are some of the best reactions to Djokovic’s epic win and a match for the ages in an already epic rivalry:
Arguably the tweet of the night came from the man who took a set in the previous round from Nadal, Diego Schwartzman, who said: “Do we tennis players play the same sport as the two of them?”
(With AFP inputs)