The 5th world Rafael Nadal qualified Friday for his 6th final of the Australian Open by eliminating the Italian Matteo Berrettini (7th) 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3. He will be looking for a record 21st Grand Slam title.
After comfortably winning the first two sets, Nadal had a slight drop in speed in the third where he committed 7 unforced errors, half of the 14 committed over the first three sets.
In the 4th set, Nadal made the break to lead 5-3 and serve for the match. He did not miss his chance.
Berrettini was playing his second Grand Slam semi-final at the age of 25 after Wimbledon in 2021 where he reached the final.
record in sight?
Rafael Nadal will face the Russian Daniil Medvedev (2nd) or the Greek Stefanos Tsitsipas (4th) in the final on Sunday to try to win his second title in Melbourne. It will be his 29th Grand Slam final, two lengths behind Djokovic and Federer’s record.
But the Spaniard could above all become the only record holder for major titles, a record he currently shares with Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic (20 titles each).
In terms of matches won, the Australian Open is his 2nd best major tournament (behind Roland-Garros), but his least successful in terms of the number of titles. He only won one (2009) while Djokovic won all 9 finals he played.
If he wins the title on Sunday, Nadal would also become the second player in the Open era, the 4th in history, to have won each major tournament at least twice. A feat achieved by Djokovic last year when he won Roland-Garros for the second time.