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Serena Out to Make History, Nadal Chasing Federer at the US Open

Rafael Nadal is never gonna have an easier chance — outside of Roland Garros — to pad his Grand Slam title count. First, defending champ Novak Djokovic had to retire in the fourth round against Stanislas Wawrinka, then Roger Federer is hobbled by an injury and blows it in the quarterfinals after going up two sets to one on Grigor Dimitrov. 

After Nadal’s win Wednesday over Diego Schwartzman, the only thing standing between him and the finals is Matteo Berrettini. The winner of that match will face the winner of Grigor Dimitrov vs. Danill Medvedev in the finals on Sunday.

Nadal should be in good shape for this weekend’s action, as he’s been the beneficiary of a walkover, twice won in straight sets and won his most recent match three sets to one — which is to say that he hasn’t had to work too hard. A win at the US Open would lift Nadal’s Grand Slam count to 19, just one short of Roger Federer’s record 20 titles. Lurking in third place is Djokovic at 16.

There’s been some major upsets in the Women’s bracket, as well. Top-seeded Naomi Osaka lost in straight sets to Belinda Bencic in the fourth round, and #18 Qiang Wang took down #2 Ashleigh Barty in straight sets, also in the fourth round. 

Then there’s Serena, who’s playing some crazy good tennis. Through five rounds she’s lost just a single set, and the score of that one was 5-7. Williams faces Elina Svitolina in the semis Thursday, while Belinda Bencic squares off against Bianca Andreescu for the other spot in the finals.

A win on Saturday would tie Williams with Margaret Court at a record 24 Grand Slam titles.

Thursday, Women’s semifinals
Williams v. Svitolina at 7pm ET
Bencic v. Andreescu at 9pm ET

Friday, Men’s semifinals
Medvedev v. Dimitrov 11am ET
Berrettini v. Nadal at 4pm ET

Saturday, Women’s finals
Winner of Bencic/Andreescu v. winner of Williams/Svitolina at 4pm ET

Sunday, Men’s finals
Medvedev/Dimitrov v. winner of Berrettini/Nadal at 4pm ET

Catch all the action at the 2019 US Open on ESPN.