Rafael Nadal on the brink of a 19th career Grand Slam title.
Daniil Medvedev first Russian man to reach a Grand Slam final since Marat Safin at the 2005 Australian Open.
Russia's Daniil Medvedev and Spain's Rafael Nadal will meet in the final of the US Open. Both advanced to the title round with comfortable victories in their semi-final matches on Friday.
Medvedev will play for a first Grand Slam title after scoring a 7-6(5), 6-4, 6-3 victory over Grigor Dimitrov, while three-time champion Nadal got the better of surprise package Matteo Berrettini 7-6(6), 6-4, 6-1 in the second semi-final.
The victory put Nadal on the brink of a 19th career Grand Slam title.
If the Spaniard wins the final he will be just one shy of Roger Federer’s record of 20 men’s Grand Slam titles.
Nadal put pressure on the underdog Italian’s serve from the start but Berrettini saved six break-points to set up a first set tie-breaker.
Berrettini raced out to a 4-0 lead thanks to some uncharacteristically sloppy play from the Spaniard and the 23-year-old had two set points at 4-6.
But Berrettini suddenly got tight and Nadal took advantage, wearing him down in the extended baseline rallies and capturing the set when the Italian sent a forehand long for his 20th unforced error, leading Nadal to let out a roar.
Nadal broke Berrettini on his 10th opportunity to take a 4-3 lead in the second set and cruised to the finish, absorbing Berrettini’s powerful forehands and redirecting them to his weaker backhand side to see off the first time Slam semi-finalist.
Nadal and big-serving Russian Medvedev's previous meeting took place in the final of last month’s Rogers Cup in Montreal, where Nadal was a 6-3, 6-0 winner.
Medvedev and Dmitrov arrived at Flushing Meadows in wildly contrasting form.
Medvedev has had a complicated relationship with the Flushing Meadows crowds, who cast him as a US Open bad boy following some on-court antics, but the fifth seeded Russian has been as good as gold where it matters -- on the scoreboard.
The win sent Medvedev, the first Russian man to reach a Grand Slam final since Marat Safin at the 2005 Australian Open, through to his fourth straight final and stretches his win streak to 12 matches.
The 78th ranked Dimitrov's play was trending downwards, winning just one of his last eight matches, while Medvedev was riding the momentum from reaching three straight finals, including a win in his last US Open tune-up in Cincinnati.
With both men fighting for a spot in their first Grand Slam final, every point was contested as if a trophy were riding on it, particularly in a tense opening set that stretched to an hour before Medvedev snatched it in a tie-break.
The second set produced more long, grinding rallies as the Russian and Bulgarian traded a pair of breaks before Medvedev landed the decisive blow to break Dimitrov and go 2-1 up.
Now in command, Medvedev continued to relentlessly wear down the tiring Dimitrov in a third set that saw him earn a break at 3-1 to take a lead he would not surrender.