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Del Potro sets up quarter-final showdown with Nadal

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Juan Martin del Potro

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Rafael Nadal described long-time rival Novak Djokovic as "one of the more complex" players he's ever met as they prepare to clash for the 52nd time on Friday with a Wimbledon final spot at stake.

There's no doubt Djokovic will be the fresher of the two when they meet on Friday, after Del Potro took a lot out of Nadal. He has one Slam final appearance in that span.

The victor will play either John Isner or Kevin Anderson in Sunday's final.

All four semi-finalists are aged 30 or over - the first time in the Open era that the men's singles semis at a Grand Slam have been contested exclusively by players over 30.

The pair have only met twice at Wimbledon, Nadal winning their 2007 semi-final when Djokovic retired hurt, the Serb gaining revenge in the 2011 final.

"Emotional match for both of us", said Nadal, who is ranked No. 1 and seeded No. 2 and won two of his 17 major championships at Wimbledon.

While Nadal's rivalry with Roger Federer may be considered as the most engaging, it is the Spaniard's rivalry with Djokovic which is the most enduring.

"I was playing tennis".

"It is always a big challenge to face Novak". Defeats against Taro Daniel and Benoit Paire left him nursing three straight defeats on the tour for the first time since 2007.

"I'm really not thinking about being an underdog or being a favourite", he said. "I tried to resist and maintain focus".

The 32-year old Anderson defeated defending champion Federer in a five-set thriller that lasted slightly more than four hours.

Shattered, and defeated, having had victory in his grasp, the 29-year-old Argentinean collapsed to the ground, only for Nadal, to cross the net and go comfort the man he first played 11 years ago.

Juan Martin del Potro powered through to only his second Wimbledon quarter-final after beating Gilles Simon. "After nearly five hours, I fell down".

The fourth-round match resumed on Tuesday afternoon after bad light had stopped play on Monday with the Argentinian leading by two sets to one.

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"Anything could happen, so this is a big achievement for me to get to the semi-finals at Wimbledon". But I'm glad with my tournament.

"I'm grateful but at the same time trying not to get ahead of myself too much".

That four-hour and 48-minute epic put him into his sixth Wimbledon semi-final and 28th at the majors.

"But my goal is to try to play very well. Physically I'm OK. That gives me confidence to keep going in the future".

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