Thanks for the memories: Rafael Nadal's 11 French Open triumphs

  • Thanks for the memories: Rafael Nadal's 11 French Open triumphs

Thanks for the memories: Rafael Nadal's 11 French Open triumphs

But as the Spaniard struggled to win points on his first serve, he was broken again for 5-4 and Schwartzman served for the set.

After nicking the first set with a break in the final game, Nadal cracked 13 winners and allowed Del Potro just 16 points in a second set lasting just half an hour. It will be followed by the all-American matchup between Madison Keys and Sloane Stephens.

The battle wore on and on, before, on the Austrian's fifth set point, Cecchinato went long to fall two sets behind.

On Friday as well, he held his nerves at the crutch moment - when he faced three set points in the second set tiebreak and worked his way back from fudging his own share of five set points. Nadal racked up 18 winners in the fourth set to capture the match, ultimately overpowering Schwartzman.

"Once he gets ahead in the match, his confidence gets back", said Moya, the 1998 French Open champion. It was his 45th career clay-court title.

And the underdog soon faded as Thiem kicked on, racing to two swift breaks in the third and rescuing two break points to serve out the match in style.

The other men's match is No. 7 Dominic Thiem of Austria against unseeded Marco Cecchinato of Italy.

And yet, insists Nadal: "I just go on court knowing that every match is hard, and I can lose and I can win".

Thiem has played with great authority and Wilander thinks he could also worry Nadal in the final, should they meet.

He buckled at 5-5 though and sent a backhand long on break point, leaving Del Potro to serve for the match, which he did easily as Cilic sent three more backhands out. He needed two days to get it done after rain suspended play on Thursday when they were locked in the first-set tiebreaker.

"Then you lose, you lose, but I gonna play with my highest passion and love for the game and for the sport to try to have success".

"This is one of my favourite tournaments and I'm looking forward to Saturday". "I never dreamed in 2005 when I played my first final here that I would be in another one".

Although at times during the first set against Del Potro, especially when he was 0-40 down at 1-1 and 15-40 down at 4-4 it looked as though he might be in for a real scrap. At No. 72, he is the lowest-ranked French Open semifinalist since 1999.

Muguruza, a two-time major champion, entered the semifinals having not lost a set in the tournament. And he did just that, easier opponent notwithstanding, with a 7-5, 7-6 (12/10), 6-1 win. There may be some shocking results over two sets, but three are different.

" If I lost that tie-break it would have been a very close match I think and I didn't want that".

No player in history has won as many grand slam titles at a single tournament as Nadal has in Paris.

Cecchinato was understandably deflated - the third set lasted a mere 24 minutes - and Thiem officially booked his spot in the final, to his mother's delight.

Schwartzman took the opening set 6-4, ending Nadal's streak of 37 consecutive completed sets at Roland Garros before rain arrived on Wednesday.

Top-ranked Simona Halep has leveled at one set-all in her French Open quarterfinal against Angelique Kerber of Germany. It was part of a run in which he claimed 14 of the last 17 games to overwhelm the No. 5-seeded del Potro 6-4, 6-1, 6-2 and earn yet another spot in the title match at Court Philippe Chatrier. Nadal has never been as vulnerable in a Roland Garrros final as he will be on Sunday.