Nadal pips Djokovic, Gonzales stops Blake | sports | Hindustan Times
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Nadal pips Djokovic, Gonzales stops Blake

sports Updated: Aug 16, 2008 00:27 IST

Spain's Rafael Nadal reached the Olympic Games final after a gripping three-set win against third-ranked Novak Djokovic on Friday.

The incoming world number one overcame a second-set lapse to win 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 in two hours and 10 minutes.

A horrendous error from Djokovic sealed it for Nadal when the Serb missed the open court with an overhead on the second match point.

Nadal had won three of their five previous meetings this year but was stopped by Djokovic in last month's Cincinnati Masters semis.

The Spaniard assumes the number one ranking on Monday from Roger Federer after claiming seven titles this year, including his fourth French Open and first Wimbledon trophy.

Blake loses to Gonzalez

First-time Olympian James Blake has come up one point short in his bid to reach the Olympic finals, losing to Fernando Gonzalez of Chile 4-6, 7-5, 11-9.

Blake had three match points with Gonzalez serving at 5-6 in the final set. But the Chilean hit four consecutive winners to hold, and on his fifth match point in the final game, he smacked a serve that Blake hit into the net.

The last hope for a US medal in singles, Blake still has a shot at the bronze. The first-time Olympian beat top-seeded Roger Federer in the quarterfinals.

The No. 12-seeded Gonzalez will play in Sunday's final against the winner of the later match between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic. Four years ago in Athens, Gonzalez won the doubles with Nicolas Massu for Chile's first gold medal in any sport.