Rafael Nadal will take on Grigor Dimitrov in the semi-finals of the 2017 Australian Open at the Rod Laver Arena on Friday (27 January).
Where to watch live
The game is set to start 8.30am GMT. Live coverage of the game is available on British Eurosport. Live scores and radio commentary are available on the official site of the Australian Open.
Nadal overcame a tough challenge against Milos Raonic with relative ease to make his first Grand Slam semi-final since he won the French Open in 2014. The Spaniard beat the world number three in straight sets in two hours and 44 minutes to book a place in the last four against Dimitrov.
The 14-time Grand Slam champion had already lost to Raonic once this season – in the quarter-finals at the 2017 Brisbane International – but dominated the encounter on Rod Laver Arena on Wednesday. Nadal can become the first player in the open era to win more than once in each of the four Grand Slam's if he can go all the way at Melbourne Park, but will have a tough encounter against one of the in-form players of the tournament.
Dimitrov, came into the tournament on the back of his first ATP title since 2014, and will be targeting his first Grand Slam final. The Bulgarian won the Brisbane International earlier in the month beating three top-10 players along the way. He is looking to resurrect his career after failing to deliver on his early promise.
Dimitrov was touted for the top when he impressed in 2014, winning three titles on three different surfaces and reaching world number eight. However, he failed to win any title in 2015 and 2016 dropping to number 40 in the ATP rankings. He has started this season in fine form and has dropped just two sets on the way to the semi-finals.
The duo are meeting for the ninth time in their careers, with Dimitrov having recorded just one win. However, it was in 2016 when they played in the quarter-finals at the China Open in Beijing. They will face either Roger Federer or Stan Wawrinka in the final of the 2017 Australian Open.
Prediction – Dimitrov to win in four sets
Betting odds (Betfair)
- Nadal win: 2/5
- Dimitrov win: 2
The pair have faced each other eight times in the past with Nadal holding a 7-1 advantage over Dimitrov. Their most recent meeting was at the China Open in Beijing in 2016 when Dimitrov recorded his first win over Nadal. They have faced each other once at the Australian Open in the past, in the quarter-finals in 2014 when the Spaniard won in four sets.