U.S. Open set for further rain delays


Rain washed out play at the U.S. Open at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center with more forecast on Saturday.
The U.S. Open is set to face further delays as weather forecasters predicted more rain after an entire day of play was lost on Friday.

Both women’s semifinals have also been moved to Saturday with the final due to be played on Sunday, but the immediate forecast is not encouraging with rainfall extremely likely in New York which could rule out play for a second consecutive day. No tennis was possible on Friday with the rain-suspended men’s quarterfinal between Rafael Nadal and Fernando Gonzalez set to resume after the first women’s semifinal between Caroline Wozniacki and Yanina Wickmayer. World number three Nadal was leading 11th seed Gonzalez 7-6 (7-4) 6-6 (3-2) before rain stopped play on Thursday with the winner set to face Juan Martin Del Potro. On Wednesday, top seed Roger Federer fended off a resurgent 12th seed Robin Soderling and two razor-thin tie-breaking sets to reach the semifinals.

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The world number one is set to face fourth seed Novak Djokovic, who reached the last four for the third year in a row after beating Spanish 10th seed Fernando Verdasco in four sets. The match between Nadal and Gonzalez will be followed on the Arthur Ashe Stadium by the second women’s semifinal between Kim Clijsters and defending champion Serena Williams. The 2008 U.S. Open went into a third week for the first time since 1987 after tropical storm Hannah pushed the men’s final on to a Monday. The tournament has been upset by adverse weather a dozen times since 1935 with a six-day postponement in 1938 the longest rain delay. In 2003, four days were affected by rain, while six sessions were affected during the 2006 event.

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