Nishikori injury hands Djokovic easy passage to Australian Open semi-finals

Explaining what happened, he said: "Before the match, I was okay", Nishikori said.

'I'm in another semi-final and I'll do everything to get ready for that one'.

"I have beaten him many times that we played against each other in last couple of years and that we played on different surfaces". "I've had plenty of matches so far this year". "There's always a few people in there that are not happy with the world of tennis, but I think you have to compete".

"I felt pain in my right thigh when I was serving. After that I couldn't really bend my knees and couldn't jump up", Nishikori said. "Yeah, I chose to stop".

Addressing his opponent before the match, Djokovic said,"He's a fighter".

"Yeah, the past two years have been a bit tough with the elbow injury and everything". "I have great memories from this arena and the fans that have supported me over the years".

Their only career meeting at Melbourne Park was in the 2012 final, when Djokovic won an epic five-setter 5-7, 6-4, 6-2, 6-7 (5), 7-5.

After returning to action, Nishikori opened the second set by easily winning his first service game but then surrendered 12 straight points to fall behind 3-1. And he never faced a break point again. He called it quits after dropping his next service game.

"In the third set I had some breakpoints". "I'm not sure if he's busy right now, but hopefully he got the message". The 24-year-old French player is playing at the Australian Open tournaments since 2014, but he never managed to clear the first stage. But now he's into his first Grand Slam semifinal.

Mauresmo, who previously helped two-time women's Australian Open champion Victoria Azarenka to world No.1 and compatriot Marion Bartoli to her surprise 2013 Wimbledon title, had been appointed as France's Davis Cup captain for 2019. "I'm just trying to focus on my game, not on the consequences and the results".

"I have lots of respect for him", Djokovic said ahead of the clash.

"What he has done this tournament is fantastic". He won all four majors in the calendar year in 1962 and '69 and is the only player to have achieved it twice. Of course Milos (Raonic), (Borna) Coric in the last round.

Djokovic, after coming through his own draining late-night slugfest against Daniil Medvedev, said he knows what to expect from the eighth seed.

  • Steve Townsend