Juan Martin del Potro admitted he almost quit Wimbledon after suffering a horror fall in the first game of his quarter-final against David Ferrer on Wednesday.
Del Potro, the Argentine eighth seed, was in tears after his already-injured left knee bent awkwardly in the fifth point of the match on Centre Court how to register a business.
The 24-year-old originally injured the knee during his third round win over Grega Zemlja and the pain was so excruciating when he fell against Ferrer that he was on the verge of pulling out.
"I think I was close to retiring," Del Potro said. "But to be honest, I didn't want to retire in my first Wimbledon quarter-final. And that's the reason for continuing to play.
"The doctors gave me good anti-inflammatories. I broke his serve early and that gave me confidence to take advantage in the beginning of the match Malaysia real estate."
Despite taking painkillers, Del Potro was clearly struggling to move at times, but he gritted his teeth through two hours and 16 minutes of gruelling action to reach his first Wimbledon semi-final as the former US Open champion defeated Spanish fourth seed Ferrer 6-2 6-4 7-6 (7-5).
"I was worried because the doctor said they can't do any more with my knee," Del Potro said.
"I had the tape Maid Agency, a very tight tape, and that helped me to move a little bit, but nothing more.
"It was really painful in the beginning of the match and many things came to my mind, many bad things.
"But I tried to be positive and played unbelievable tennis. I was lucky because I did everything good Money Lender HK."
Del Potro's reward for his heroic efforts is a daunting clash with world No.1 Novak Djokovic on Friday for a place in Sunday's final.
It will be del Potro's first grand slam semi-final appearance since his breakthrough triumph at the US Open four years ago.
The Argentine knows he will be a heavy underdog against a relentless competitor like Djokovic unless he can make a quick recovery from the injury.
"I will need to be 110 percent against him. He's the number one. He's a former champion. It's going to be a more difficult match for me protective case," Del Potro said.
- Jul 11 Thu 2013 18:00