Novak Djokovic and Juan Martin del Potro went back and forth Thursday night, battling in a U.S. Open quarterfinal to remember under the lights at Arthur Ashe Stadium, but at the end of each set, it was the second-ranked Djokovic who made all the right moves, topping the seventh-ranked del Potro in straight sets, 6-2, 7-6 (7-3), 6-4.
After Djokovic easily captured the first set, the match's second set proved to be a thrilling showdown between the two that included a 12th game that took nearly 20 minutes. After del Potro finally forced a second-set tiebreaker, Djokovic again put his foot down, cruising through the tiebreaker 7-3.
Down two sets and somewhat undone by losing the 84-minute epic of a set, del Potro pushed to muster a comeback in the third, but the defending champion Djokovic closed out the victory.
With his triumph, Djokovic makes his way back to the semifinals at the U.S. Open, his fifth straight year reaching at least the final four in Flushing Meadows, N.Y.