Day 13 of the 2022 French Open saw the men’s singles semi-finals take place, with a clay legend and newcomer securing their spots in the decider.
The Sporting News wraps up the best of the action from Roland-Garros.
Rafael Nadal reaches final after ‘serious’ Alexander Zverev injury
Rafael Nadal will feature in his 14th French Open final, but it came following a gruesome injury to his opponent, Alexander Zverev.
The pair were engaged in a tight encounter, with the Spaniard claiming the first set via a tiebreak.
MORE: Why Rafael Nadal will win the 2022 French Open
Tied at 6-6 in the second set, Zverev’s ankle buckled as he made a return, causing him to drop to the ground in obvious pain.
Nadal may have walked away with the victory, but his focus post-match was on the well-being of his German opponent.
“Only thing that I can say is I hope he’s not too bad,” Nadal said.
“Hopefully, it’s just the normal thing when you turn your ankle, and hopefully nothing [is broken]. That’s what everybody hopes.
“Even if for me it’s a dream to be in the final of Roland Garros – of course, that way is not the way that we want it to be. If you are human, you should feel very sorry for a colleague.”
Zverev provided an update on his condition via social media.
“A very difficult moment for me today on the court,” Zverev said.
“Obviously, a fantastic match … [however] it looks like I have a very serious injury, but the medical team and doctors are still checking on it.
“We will keep you updated.”
Casper Ruud makes Norwegian Grand Slam history
In the second men’s singles semi-final of the day, Casper Ruud defeated Marin Čilić 3-6 6-4 6-2 6-2.
The 23-year-old has now become the first Norwegian to reach a Grand Slam singles final.
Despite dropping the first set, Ruud was able to minimise his errors – making no double faults – and crucially won 64 per cent of points on his second serve to defeat Croatian veteran Čilić.
The Roland Garros final will be new territory for Ruud, who has also never faced off against Rafael Nadal.
Speaking after his semi-final win, he mentioned how Nadal has been a lifelong idol.
“I guess I have worked on [staying calm] because when I was younger I was a bit of a cry-baby,” Ruud said.
“I cried too much and was always too negative. But I guess I also grew up a little bit and matured over the years.
“Looking up to Rafa – the player I’m going to play in the final – he never complains and he’s a perfect example of how I think you should behave on court.
“Never give up and never complain. He’s been my idol for all my life.”
Attention turns to the women’s singles final
Iga Świątek and Coco Gauff will face off in the women’s singles final on Saturday afternoon (Paris time).
The tournament favourite heading into Roland-Garros, Świątek will be aiming to claim her second French Open title.
Gauff comes into the match as an underdog, but the teenage sensation is yet to drop a set in this Grand Slam, setting up an intriguing final.
Take a look at The Sporting News‘ match preview here.