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Djokovic outlasts Del Potro in longest-ever Wimbledon semifinal

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

London, Jul 5 (EFE).- Serbia's Novak Djokovic overcame Argentine Juan Martin del Potro in the longest men's singles semifinal in Wimbledon history, pulling out a 7-5, 4-6, 7-6 (7-2), 6-7 (6-8), 6-3 victory Friday in four hours and 43 minutes.

Del Potro played the match with a heavily wrapped left knee but he managed to keep the match close thanks to some clutch play and Djokovic's inability to convert numerous break-point opportunities.

The Argentine's power from the baseline also managed to push Djokovic back on his heels and even produce a few knockdowns when the world No. 1 tried to change direction on the slippery grass surface.

The Serbian, who won his lone Wimbledon title in 2011, seemed to have the match well under control when he took the first set in just under an hour.

But the Serbian paid dearly for squandering five break points early in the second set, as Del Potro gained more confidence with his massive ground strokes and broke Djokovic's serve at love en route to tying the match at a set apiece.

The turning point in the match came in the third set, when Del Potro netted an overhead at 2-3 in the tiebreaker and then went on to commit several more unforced errors to go down two sets to one.

Djokovic seemed to have booked a spot in the final when he took a 6-4 lead in the fourth-set tiebreaker, but it was then that Del Potro won the admiration of the London crowd with a riveting comeback to push the match to a final set.

Del Potro was increasingly bothered by his knee in the fifth set, but Djokovic allowed him to stay alive with some sloppy play before finally securing the break of serve in the eighth game and finishing off the contest one game later.

The Serbian pulled out the victory despite converting just three of his 15 break-point opportunities.

Next up for the Serbian in Sunday's final will be the winner between home-crowd favorite Andy Murray of Scotland, the No. 2 seed, and surprise semifinalist Jerzy Janowicz of Poland.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/agencia-efe/130705/djokovic-outlasts-del-potro-longest-ever-wimbledon-semifinal