Rafael Nadal of Spain has reached his fourth career United States Open men’s final. On Friday, Nadal beat 24th seed Matteo Berrettini of Italy 7-6, 6-4, 6-1 in the men’s semifinals of the 2019 United States Open.
The first set, which took 74 minutes to complete, was a huge turning point in this match. Berrettini was up 4-1 and 5-2 in the tiebreaker, but the second ranked Nadal showed tremendous resiliency and determination and won the first set in a tiebreak 8-6.
The final two sets Nadal was in complete control. In the second set, Nadal broke Berrettini in the eighth game and then only lost one game in the entire third set. The last two sets took only 81 minutes to complete after a very competitive opening 12 games and tiebreak.
A major reason why Nadal beat Berrettini came down to unforced errors. Nadal only had 18 unforced errors, while Berrettini had 44.
With the win, Nadal will face the fifth ranked Daniil Medvedev of Russia. It was a convincing win for Medvedev too. He beat the unseeded Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria 7-6, 6-4, 6-3 in the other semifinal on Friday afternoon. Like the Nadal/Berrettini match, the first set in Medvedev/Dimitrov went to a tiebreak, before Medvedev took control. The score in the first set tiebreak was 7-5 for Medvedev.
Tennis history was also made on Friday after the victories for Nadal and Medvedev. For the first time ever, the Rogers Cup finalists and the U.S. Open finalists were the exact same for the men and women in the same year. At the 2019 Rogers Cup Final in Montreal, Quebec on August 11, Nadal beat Medvedev rather easily 6-3, 6-0.
On the women’s side, the finalists for the Rogers Cup and U.S. Open were Serena Williams of Saginaw, MI and Biancca Andreescu of Canada. At the Rogers Cup in Toronto, Ontario on August 11, Andreescu beat Williams 3-1 before Williams pulled out with a back injury. Six times before on the men’s side and six times before on the women’s side has the Rogers Cup finalists been the same as the U.S. Open finalists, but it has never happened in the same year for men and women until 2019.