Nadal unfazed by another Next Gen opponent in Tsitsipas

Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal pose for photos after Australian Open final

After seeing off Frances Tiafoe, another Next Gen star awaits in Stefanos Tsitsipas but Rafael Nadal will do nothing differently.

Rafael Nadal sees no reason to treat his Australian Open semi-final against another Next Gen star in Stefanos Tsitsipas differently to any other match.

The Spaniard eased into the last four at Melbourne Park – a stage at which he has lost just once, in 2008 – with a 6-3 6-4 6-2 success over the unseeded Frances Tiafoe on Rod Laver Arena.

And next up for the second seed is a meeting with Tiafoe’s fellow Next Gen alumni Tsitsipas, who counts six-time champion Roger Federer among his scalps en route to a maiden grand slam semi-final.

But Nadal will not be changing his approach as he prepares for a 30th appearance in the last four of a major.

“I play another match if they are the Next Gen or not,” said the 17-time grand slam winner.

“For me what really matters is win the match and give myself a chance to be in the next round. That’s the real feeling for me at this stage of my career.

“I know they are good. I know they will be fighting for the most important things during the next couple of years. I don’t take it that way. I just take it like a difficult match against players that have a lot of energy. That’s all.

“It’s another match. It’s a difficult match. I try to do my thing, do it well to try to give myself the chance to be through. It’s a good challenge for me. I hope to be ready for it.

“I am playing well. I did a lot of things well during the week and a half. Let’s see. I don’t know, I can’t predict what can happen.

“I am just going day by day and being very happy about the way things started for me. It’s very positive the way that I am in the semi-finals. That’s the only thing that I can say. Then I’m going to try to be ready for it.”

‘Not a big surprise Tsitsipas beating Federer’ – Nadal